April 27, 2021 · 4m read
Announcing Our Series B
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I’m happy to be the bearer of a very small piece of good news in the midst of what’s been a rough year for everyone. Today, we’re finally announcing our Series B led by legendary solo capitalist Elad Gil with participation from existing investor Andreessen Horowitz and a host of top-tier executives and security experts. Elad is a uniquely gifted thinker and investor who’s been involved with our company since near the beginning and it was a fairly obvious choice to work more closely with him as we grow. Our Series B adds an additional $40M of funding to our $22M Series A led by Andreessen Horowitz in 2018.
We’re also unveiling our case study with Lyft and a batch of other new public reference customers including Roblox, Databricks, Collective Health, and Iterable. The past year was a busy one with taking care of each other and our families during the pandemic, adding many talented new faces to the team, and growing our business by 472%. Material now partners with everyone from large international conglomerates all the way to high-risk individuals. We’re honored to serve some of the finest Security and IT teams on the planet and we’re grateful to learn from them every day.
What is Material?
Material Security is a group of people and a software company dedicated to the idea that it takes just as much creativity to make a technology safe as it does to invent it. Or, as a customer put it recently: “you’re trying to make tech into a single-edged sword.” We know that just because a technology is old and/or ubiquitous doesn’t mean it’s safe (the example we gave in our original manifesto was the 70 year gap between the invention of the automobile and the modern seatbelt). We believe that cybersecurity is a fundamental challenge to open societies in the 21st century and that to combat this, software vendors in our industry should reform to embrace pragmatism, productivity, and interdisciplinary thinking.
Our mission began after the 2016 US elections with protecting email and the increasingly dire state of this problem has demanded our continued focus there. As a technology, email is downright antediluvian, but that didn’t stop state-sponsored hackers from unprecedented attacks that compromised the email of hundreds of thousands of organizations and governments in the recent SolarWinds and Hafnium incidents. Moreover, the pandemic’s rapid and unexpected shift to WFH broke traditional infosec assumptions for millions of workers. This required leading-edge “Zero Trust” software vendors like Material to bring new techniques to bear in diverse environments at an accelerated pace. It’s been the most rewarding work of my life, but like so many others we’re emerging from this year wiser, more thankful, and extremely hungry to rebuild and rekindle human relationships.
Fundraises are just a milestone: the future is built by people, not capital. I want to thank each of our customers for placing your trust in us and for your collaboration, creativity, and evangelism. You are what gets us out of bed and onto Zoom in the morning. Our new funding will make it easier to grow with you and support your needs as you face all of the unexpected infosec challenges of the next ten years. I also want to thank all of our early investors, advisors, and friends who believed that email security could mean more than just overgrown spam detectors—and who we’ve missed terribly this year.
After this year we all have great challenges in front of us, and we all have a role in overcoming them. At Material our work is clear to us, and we wish you the very best in yours.
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