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Beringea Leads £6.5m Investment in Exonar Alongside Downing Ventures

Sector leading data discovery and governance platform, Exonar, a vital tool for the modern data age

London, 21st January 2019: Transatlantic venture capital investor, Beringea, has announced that it has led a £6.5m investment in Exonar, a leading data discovery and management software firm. Downing Ventures, the early stage investor, has also participated in the round alongside notable existing investors, Amadeus Capital Partners and Winton Ventures.

Enterprises are facing a fundamental change in the way they process and store information. An exponential increase in data volume means organisations must find new ways to understand the risk as well as the opportunities in their data. Driven by new regulation, cyber threats and competition, organisations who use data they hold effectively will survive and thrive.

Exonar discovers an organisation’s most sensitive, valuable and personal information. By simply plugging Exonar into a network, an instant view of all structured and unstructured data is provided, enabling the creation of inventories, security of sensitive data and regulatory compliance.

Recent research by EY found the UK’s largest firms spent over $1.1bn to comply with the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) before it came into force in May 2018, while the same research found that Fortune 500 companies had spent $7.8bn.

Data discovery technology is proving vital to businesses that can easily hold petabytes of data across their entire information estate. The significant growth of data value has led to industry analysts estimating that the global data governance software market will grow 22 per cent annually over the next five years to a value of $3.5bn by 2023. Exonar is well positioned to provide the technology needed to support this extensive growth.

Exonar was founded by Adrian Barrett, a visionary with substantial experience in data, analytics, and information security who has previously worked for Cisco and Lumeta, a global network data specialist. He is supported by an experienced management team with decades of leadership experience in global cyber security and technology companies such as BT, Fujitsu, Veritas, Symantec and EMC.

Adrian Barrett, CEO and Founder, commented: “These are exciting times for Exonar. To receive significant backing from Beringea and Downing Ventures reinforces our belief that the Exonar platform has a significant role to play in enterprise-level data discovery and management. We have a clear vision for future development and the investment will enable us to further enhance our product, enabling our customers to meet current and future data demands such as GDPR and CCPA swiftly, simply and at scale.”

“Data is the backbone of modern business. And yet, it also poses an existential risk, which has traditionally required substantial resources and investment to manage. Exonar transforms this dynamic with a platform that maps and understands petabytes of information in seconds.” Stuart Veale, Managing Partner of Beringea, commented: “Beringea has backed Exonar’s leadership and pioneering technology to create a cornerstone of data governance.”

James Lewis, Investment Director at Downing Ventures, commented: “Not a day goes by that we don’t hear about the importance of accessing and making better use of data in all our businesses – Exonar is at the forefront of shaping and solving this challenge and we’re delighted to be part of the journey with Adrian and the team.”

– ENDS –

Notes to editors

Media contacts:

Henry Philipson, Head of Communications, Beringea

Email: hphilipson@beringea.co.uk

Mobile: +44 (0)7837162546

About Exonar

Exonar is a data discovery software company based in Newbury, Berkshire. Founded in 2013 by Adrian Barrett (CEO), Exonar discovers an organisation’s most sensitive, valuable and personal information, therefore providing the answer to an all-too-common statement – “I just don’t know what I’ve got”.

By simply plugging Exonar into a network, an instant view of all structured and unstructured data is provided, enabling the creation of inventories, security of sensitive data and regulatory compliance.

For more information, please contact Exonar: Tellmemore@exonar.com

About Beringea

Beringea is a highly active growth capital investor with $715m under management and offices in the UK and US. It supports high-growth businesses with annual revenues of more than £1 million, investing between £1 million and £20 million to help companies scale.

With a successful track-record of investments spanning 30 years, Beringea has more than 60 portfolio companies across its US and UK offices. The company has a history of strong partnerships with management teams, often reinvesting in its successful entrepreneurs.

Its core areas for investment include digital media, business software and services, and consumer industries. With an extensive range of expertise across the team, and an ability for spotting and following opportunities, Beringea’s portfolio includes companies in a range of sectors, and its team continues to be at the forefront of emerging trends.

http://www.beringea.co.uk/

About Downing Ventures

Downing Ventures is an evergreen fund investing in seed to Series A companies, with the possibility of follow-on investments. It invests in a variety of technology sectors including consumer internet and mobile, enterprise software, financial technology and health technology. The fund has a portfolio of around 45 companies as of October 2018. Downing Ventures work alongside a number of investment partners and accelerator programmes and incubators, including the London Co-Investment Fund.

 

The Gift of Charity – Reducing Data Labour Post-GDPR

Charities are under-resourced by design; there is always more that can be done to help, yet resources are often limited.

Many operate across multiple jurisdictions, have donors from around the world, and rely on technology to connect workers to the people and processes in need of their support. With a decentralised working model and resources always feeling stretched, charities are under pressure to both optimise and protect their data.

This pressure has led to bad data practices in the past. In 2017, pre-GDPR implementation, the ICO fined 11 charities for misusing personal data. The charities in question set out  to create more targeted profiles of potential donors, and shared data between themselves to create large common pools of donors. Those charities and fines were as follows:

  • The International Fund for Animal Welfare – £18,000
  • Cancer Support UK – £16,000
  • Cancer Research UK – £16,000
  • Guide Dogs for the Blind Association – £15,000
  • Macmillan Cancer Support – £14,000
  • The Royal British Legion – £12,000
  • The NSPCC – £12,000
  • Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity – £11,000
  • WWF-UK – £9,000
  • Battersea Dogs and Cats Home – £9,000
  • Oxfam – £6,000

In a post-GDPR world, the fines would’ve been higher; an eventuality nobody in the data protection industry would want to see come to fruition against any charitable organisation.

In order to prevent a repeat of 2017 in a world with higher consequences, charities are seeing data privacy and data protection both as a necessity (for GDPR compliance) and as an opportunity (taking control of your data leading to improved donor targeting and performance analytics).

However, a webinar of 300 prominent charity sector leaders, hosted by Advance in April 2018, revealed that only 5% of attending charities felt they were GDPR compliant, with 75% saying there was significantly more work to do.

So, what can the charity sector learn from industry on closing the compliance gap, whilst also not draining resources needed to provide essential services?

Organisations are turning to technology to solve the data problem, and free up their time

The latest International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) and EY Information Governance report showed that:

  • Amongst companies preparing for GDPR, 57% were investing in technology in 2018, up from 27% in 2016.
  • 68% of programme leaders now say data inventory and mapping is a priority, up from 48% in 2016.

Data Protection Officers spend most of their time trying to answer, ‘What data do I have? Where is it? Who has access to it? How is it secured?’ and in 2019 it’s no longer possible to be literally ‘hands-on’ with data. It’s therefore no surprise that organisations are turning to data discovery and privacy compliance technologies to ease their data burdens.

The era of the technology enabled DPO is here – what do I do?

3 simple steps for identifying and deploying technology to help you with your DPO role:

  • Discover your data – Identify which repositories, applications and platforms hold personal data and monitor those repositories
  • Define bad data practices – Define sets of rules for each area of your business processes that use personal data. Ensure those rules are configured into your technology and triggers defined for identifying bad practices/data breaches
  • Communicate findings to the organisation – Let the team know about the trends you’re finding in personal data and let the organisation know where things need to be improved or where things are going well. Communication is key for data leadership.

By protecting personal data, charities can safeguard themselves from the regulators and maintain focus on the essential service they provide. Here’s to a more secure 2019!