London, UK-based Garrison Technologies has raised £22.9 million (approximately $30 million) in Series B funding, bringing the total raised £34.9 million (around $50 million at current exchange rates). The funding was led by Dawn Capital, with participation from existing investors IP Group plc, BGF and NM Capital.
This is one of the largest ever funding rounds for a UK cybersecurity firm from UK venture capital, and the largest since Digital Shadows raised $26 million in September 2017. It continues a growing trend for London to be Europe’s focus for tech investments. In 2017, UK firms raised £2.45 billion, almost four times more than Germany (£694m) and more than France, Ireland and Sweden combined.
Garrison provides hardware-based web isolation that allows users free and unrestricted — but secure — access to the internet. Its product, Silicon Assured Video Isolation technology (Garrison SAVI) converts potentially dangerous web content to a stream of harmless pixels.
“Organizations today recognize the ever-growing threat to their most sensitive data and systems posed simply by allowing employees to browse the web, but until now they’ve faced an unhappy choice: restrict web access and allow productivity to suffer, or run the risk of exposure to hackers,” comments Garrison CEO David Garfield.
“We’ve designed the world’s first truly secure web browser to solve this problem, applying national-security-grade levels of protection to the commercial environment — at an accessible price point — in a way that doesn’t destroy the user experience as employees go about their work,” the company claims.
‘National-security-grade’, like ‘military-grade encryption’, is one of those meaningless marketing terms used to impress potential customers. In this case, Garfield could be excused. Garrison was founded in 2014 by David Garfield and Henry Harrison, who previously worked together at national-security specialist Detica plc and subsequently established the Cyber Security business unit at BAE Systems plc. Garrison also includes the UK government among its customers.
“The security industry has long suffered from overblown claims and overinflated prices, without ever ensuring organizations remain truly protected from even some of the most basic threats — this is particularly true of web browsing security,” continued Garfield. “From day one our mission has been developing practical security tools that actually do what they’re supposed to.”
SAVI is already in use by employees within global blue-chip organizations across the banking, insurance, media, telecoms and legal sectors. “This funding round,” said Garfield, “marks a key milestone for our business and will help us to transform the day-to-day security of many thousands more organizations worldwide.” The firm says the funds will be used “to expand Garrison’s sales and marketing activities, to grow the company’s engineering team and to enhance the company’s ësafe web browsing as a service’ cloud offering.”