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Cybersecurity Firm ReliaQuest Gets $300M To Bolster Platform

ReliaQuest says it has hired more than 70 people since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March, and plans to hire an additional 100 employees by the end of 2020, according to Founder and CEO Brian Murphy.

ReliaQuest has received $300 million in growth financing from private equity giant KKR to accelerate development of the company’s GreyMatter cybersecurity intelligence platform.

The Tampa, Fla.-based cybersecurity managed service provider said the proceeds will also fund strategic hiring and international expansion. ReliaQuest said it has hired more than 70 people since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March, and plans to hire an additional 100 employees by the end of 2020, according to a blog post from founder and CEO Brian Murphy.

“We’ll use the money to make those hires and find the right kind of talent we need in key roles in the U.S. and other markets, in addition to our operations in Dublin and London,” Murphy wrote in the blog post. Murphy was not immediately available for a phone interview.

[Related: 12 Hot Cybersecurity Startups You Need To Know About At RSA 2020]

ReliaQuest was founded in 2007, employs 500 people and previously raised $30 million in growth equity from FTV Capital in June 2016. Over the past three years, ReliaQuest said its revenue has grown by more than 450 percent thanks to its relationship with prominent brands like Abercrombie & Fitch, the Boston Celtics, Campbell’s and Southwest Airlines. ReliaQuest has an employee retention rate of 91 percent.

“Some people thought I was crazy when we started the company in 2007 amid a global financial crisis,” Murphy wrote in the blog post. “My wife and I took on credit card debt and a second home mortgage to survive through difficult times and the uncertainty of a startup while raising a young family. But the risks we took to get here and the tenacity we had all worked out.”

ReliaQuest’s flagship GreyMatter software platform provides customers with a team of highly trained cyber analysts to deliver dramatically improved security effectiveness and efficiency, according to the company. GreyMatter consolidates, normalizes and correlates data from customers’ existing cyber technologies to increase visibility across the enterprise, ReliaQuest said.

GreyMatter enables continuous threat detection, threat hunting and remediation through its use of artificial intelligence and automation, according to ReliaQuest. As a result, the company said customers are able to achieve a more effective security posture by maximizing the value of their existing cybersecurity investments.

“ReliaQuest’s GreyMatter platform is supported by some of the top security talent in the industry, enabling enterprises to increase visibility across cloud and on-premises technologies, allowing them to reduce risk and compromises,” Murphy said in a statement.

ReliaQuest said it’s gotten to know KKR well over the last couple of years since the private equity firm became one of the company’s customers. KKR recognizes the value ReliaQuest provides to enterprise security teams, and has a global reach and large network of portfolio companies, which Murphy said makes them an ideal innovation and growth partner.

KKR has made several cybersecurity-related investments in recent years, highlighted by the firm’s February 2017 buy of Optiv, No. 26 on the 2020 CRN Solution Provider 500, for $1.9 billion and $300 million investment in security awareness training vendor KnowBe4 in June 2019. KKR also participated in funding rounds for endpoint security vendor Cylance and identity security vendor ForgeRock.

“They [KKR] will give us the tools and guidance we need to grow while allowing us to stay uniquely ReliaQuest,” Murphy wrote in the blog post. “They’re the right partner, at the right time, and with the right focus.”

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