Israeli cybersecurity firm Pentera has raised $150m (£110m) in its latest funding round, taking the company’s value to $1bn (£736m), as it eyes up flotation.
The funding round led by K1 Investment Management could be the last capital raise before an initial public offering, which will “probably” take place in 2024, Pentera chief Amitai Ratzon told Reuters.
Pentera, formerly known as Pcysys, plans to use the capital to double its engineer team and expand into new markets including the Asia-Pacific region and Latin America.
A third of its customers are currently based in the United States, where it plans to float.
It comes as the firm has seen growing demand across industries amid a surge in ransomware attacks as more companies digitalize operations during the pandemic.
“We want to transform from a company that has a few great products to a platform with many modules, and cover any element of the future attack surface of companies,” Ratzon explained.
Pentera raised $25m (£18m) from investors in its last funding round in September 2020, valuing the company at about $175m (£129m), according to PitchBook.
Founded by Arik Liberzon, Arik Faingold, and a group of former cybersecurity researchers at the Israel Defense Forces, Pentera allows security workers to test its network vulnerability from the hacker’s perspective.
By imitating hackers’ attack in a safe environment, Pentera offers security teams an assessment of their resiliency against real attacks.
It has over 400 enterprise customers across the world, including investment business Blackstone.
New data this week revealed that more than half of firms believe that exposure to a cyber attack has increased alongside the rise of remote working, with industry experts calling it “the single biggest risk” to business.
Research by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) found that one in ten companies said they had been the victim of a cyber-attack in the last year, rising to more than one in seven for larger firms.
Israel is often seen as a market leader in this space, with the Israeli government investing millions.
Google acquired Israeli cybersecurity startup Siemplify earlier this month for an estimated $500m (£371m), and Israeli AI firm Windward announced it would list on London AIM with a £126m market cap in early December last year.