Cybersecurity startup Darktrace gets $65m investment boost

Machine learning-based cybersecurity company based out of Cambridge seals major financial backing from global investment firm KKR.

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Darktrace uses machine learning to identify and fight threats without the need for human input.

Image: Darktrace

A British cybersecurity startup has raised $65 million in funding as part of its ongoing global expansion efforts.

Darktrace, which applies machine learning to enable networks to automatically self-defend against potential threats, has secured the financing from a group led by global investment firm KKR. Additional support comes from existing investor global growth equity firm Summit Partners, along with new backers in the form of TenEleven Ventures and SoftBank-affiliated SB ISAT Fund.

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Founded in 2013, Darktrace uses machine learning techniques initially developed by mathematicians at the University of Cambridge. The company's latest product, Antigena, uses machine learning to enable networks to automatically self-defend against potential threats without any prior knowledge of new attacks which might be used by hackers.

The company's advisory board includes Lord Evans of Weardale, who spent 33 years at MI5, Andrew France, who has 30 years of experience at GCHQ, and Autonomy co-founder and investor Mike Lynch.

In the three years since it was established, Darktrace has grown rapidly and now has over 300 employees spread across its global headquarters in Cambridge, UK, and San Francisco, along with offices across North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia.

For Darktrace CEO Nicole Eagan, the extra investment provides an opportunity to continue the global expansion of the British cybersecurity provider, which already has over 1,000 clients in sectors including government, banks, and critical infrastructure.

"Securing the backing of another leading global investor like KKR is an important milestone for Darktrace and a strong validation of the technology we have developed. We chose to partner with KKR because of their unique global network to support our international expansion and rich history of enterprise building in the technology sector," she said.

Darktrace previously received an investment injection of $18 million.

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