CERTIVOX RAISES $8M IN SERIES B FINANCING FROM NTT DOCOMO VENTURES AND OCTOPUS INVESTMENTS Corporate Venture Capital Unit of Japan's largest mobile services provider makes strategic investment to accelerate adoption of CertiVox's M-Pin Strong Authentication Platform
LONDON, May 1, 2014 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- May 1st,2014, London, UK – CertiVox, an innovator in authentication and encryption, today announced it has raised Series B funding of $8 Million from NTT DOCOMO Ventures and current investors Octopus Investments. The investment by NTT DOCOMO Ventures is its first in Europe, signifying the innovation and strength of CertiVox's technology and its breakthrough potential to solve current problems in online authentication systems. Taken together with the company's Seed and Series A financings, CertiVox has raised $17 Million to date.
With this latest round of funding, CertiVox will accelerate the development and reach of its M-Pin Strong Authentication Platform, the first software-based multi-factor authentication platform that replaces password-based authentication without the need for third party authentication devices. The company will expand its sales, business development and marketing efforts, and continue to drive partnerships with cloud service providers, OEM channels including smart device manufacturers and mobile service operators, and ISVs.
"NTT DOCOMO Ventures has recognised the technical innovation, uniqueness and breakthrough potential of M-Pin in solving current problems in authentication systems. We have been experiencing strong M-Pin adoption in the enterprise, and this investment will enable us to achieve our vision of delivering a ubiquitous, strong authentication platform across digital channels," said Brian Spector, CEO, CertiVox. "We are incredibly excited to be working with NTT as a strategic partner and its array of businesses which include mobile service operators, cloud services, and security-as-a-service units, which are global in reach. The team at the UKTI Innovation Gateway played a vital role in securing this investment, and their dedicated assistance in helping us meet potential global partners was the catalyst for our relationship with NTT DOCOMO Ventures."
"NTT DOCOMO Ventures seeks advanced and disruptive technologies, services and business models around the world and looks to leverage NTT Group companies' global operations, technologies and vast network to its portfolio companies," commented Nobuyuki Akimoto, Senior Vice President and COO at NTT DOCOMO Ventures. "CertiVox's M-Pin Strong Authentication Platform is a great and innovative platform, and ideally suited for today's smart devices. M-Pin provides a much-needed advancement for user-friendly, scalable, strong authentication security. CertiVox is the first investment by NTT DOCOMO Ventures into Europe, and a great example of the technical innovation going on in London's Tech City."
Welcoming the news UK Trade & Investment Minister Lord Livingston said: "The UK is the top destination in Europe for Japanese investment and today's deal with CertiVox is one of many high-value Japanese investments UKTI is working to attract in the fields of low carbon infrastructure, advanced engineering and information communication technologies."
Luke Hakes, from the ventures team at Octopus Investments, said, "It is a great accolade for the team at CertiVox to have the backing and support of NTT DOCOMO, Japan's largest mobile services provider. This is clear evidence that CertiVox's M-Pin Strong Authentication Platform is a market-leading technology. Octopus has believed in what CertiVox is doing right from the start and we are delighted to continue to support the business as it moves into the next exciting stage of its development."
Dr. Michael Scott, the visionary behind the M-Pin Protocol and co-founder of CertiVox, launched the company with a management team of industry experts in 2011 to replace password-based authentication for all online computing systems with M-Pin, a user-friendly, zero-knowledge proof authentication protocol based on strong cryptography and open standards.
CertiVox provides the M-Pin Service and the M-Pin Authentication Client and Server software. M-Pin provides simple, scalable, password-less, two-factor authentication without tokens. M-Pin is a software-only solution, ideally suited for smart devices and does not require the presence of any third party authentication device. M-Pin can be embedded into software, hardware and can leverage Trusted Platform Modules (TPM) to provide the most secure strong authentication available to any application on any device.
CertiVox Ltd, based in London, UK, was founded to deliver a secure, federated, online strong authentication platform to enable trust in online identities and transactions. The company is lead by a team of security industry veterans from nCipher, PwC, RSA, and Informatica. For more information, visit www.certivox.com.
About NTT DOCOMO Ventures
NTT DOCOMO Ventures, a Corporate Venture Capital Unit for both NTT DOCOMO and NTT Holdings group, is operating DOCOMO Innovation Fund and NTT Investment Partners Fund, both are $100M size. NTT is a Japanese telecommunications company and one of the largest telecommunications groups in the world, owning more than 800 companies as subsidiaries worldwide. NTT DOCOMO is Japan's largest mobile service provider, serves more than 60 million customers with a high-quality and ultra-high-speed nationwide LTE network that will be available to more than 98% of Japanese population by FY2014. Both NTT and DOCOMO are headquartered in Tokyo and are listed on the Tokyo and New York stock exchanges.
Octopus is a venture capital investor backing talented teams with the potential to build big businesses. Our focus is on identifying entrepreneurs and fast growth companies that can scale explosively to create, transform or dominate an industry. The team has a proven track record of helping build exceptional global businesses, including graze.com, Secret Escapes, SwiftKey, YPlan, and Zoopla Property Group.
Octopus works in close partnership with entrepreneurs, adding real value to the portfolio beyond financial investment. The team's work is supported by access to the Octopus Venture Partners, a network of approximately 100 outstanding business leaders and entrepreneurs who provide an invaluable wealth of expertise and resource for our portfolio companies. The Ventures team is part of Octopus Investments, one of the UK's fastest growing investment management companies specialising in small company investing, with more than £3 billion of assets under management.
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