£5m raised to develop cybersecurity solutions

Sheffield-based technology business, Sitehop, has raised £5m in seed funding.

Financing was co-led by Amadeus Capital Partners and Manta Ray Ventures with participation from Mercia Ventures, the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (NPIF), the founders of Event Horizon Capital & Osney Capital and strategic angels, including Rick Lazansky, founder of Silicon Catalyst, and Illia Polosukhin, founder of NEAR.

Sitehop addresses a critical challenge in the digital age: that current software encryption solutions slow down communications networks by adding delay to the system.

It offers its flagship product, SAFEblade 1100, to help businesses handle the escalating threat level from increasingly sophisticated cyber criminals, with hardware-enforced enterprise encryption.

Melissa Chambers, CEO, said: “This investment allows us to expand our global reach, with sales and support engineering staff in Brazil, the US, India, and grow our Yorkshire headquarters.

“We will be adding engineers and production workers and moving into a new Sheffield location.

“The investment will also enable Sitehop to pursue its technology roadmap – fleshing out the range of SAFE products securing all types of data-in-motion, and developing parallel products using our world-class skillsets in cryptography and programmable hardware design.

“We aim to get Sitehop’s products into the backbone of most of the world’s networks in the next few years.”

Nick Kingsbury, partner, Amadeus Capital Partners, said: “Sitehop is bringing a novel hardware-based approach to a fundamental challenge facing the providers of the essential network infrastructure underpinning our digital society.

“The flexibility and scalability of Sitehop’s data encryption technology makes it accessible to SMEs as well as large enterprises, meaning there need be no weak link in our defence against cyber criminality.”

Lawrence Barclay, managing partner, Manta Ray Ventures, added: “We are really excited to partner with Melissa, Ben and the Sitehop team in the next phase of their journey.

“We have been incredibly impressed at how thoughtful and effective an approach they have taken to the increasingly critical challenge of network security.

“We are past the point of dependency on data connectivity and need to ensure enough attention is put on how it is secured without compromise on performance and with important attention to energy efficiency.”

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