KnowBe4 Inc (Nasdaq: KNBE), the provider of security awareness training and simulated phishing platform, has announced the formation of KnowBe4 Ventures, its venture arm focused on the human layer of cybersecurity. Two existing leading cybersecurity venture funds – Elephant and Ten Eleven Ventures — are partnering with KnowBe4 on the initiative.
How integral is the human layer of cybersecurity?
According to Verizon in the 2022 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR), 82% of breaches involved a human element, yet less than three percent of cybersecurity budgets are spent in this area. This spend mismatch is an opportunity for KnowBe4 Ventures to invest in innovative companies that strengthen and support the human layer of cybersecurity.
“Cyber attacks continue to plague firms in every industry. Majority of the attacks target a human, so it is vital to support founders taking on the challenge of improving security and accelerating the value of securing the human layer,” said Stu Sjouwerman, CEO, KnowBe4.
What start-ups are eligible to receive investment?
KnowBe4 Ventures arm will be investing off its balance sheets and will be focused on early-stage investments at the Seed through Series B stages. It will invest in companies that:
- address the human factor or have an integration case with KnowBe4’s products
- are actively raising and have a lead investor identified
- have a product in the market and initial customer traction
- have a compelling financial strategy, unit economics and long-term growth potential.