Today I am excited to announce C5 Capital’s investment in Blue Cedar Networks, a San Francisco-headquartered application security software company that is transforming the pace at which enterprises achieve mobile maturity. Blue Cedar is the leading mobile app security integration platform for organizations who need to secure and accelerate the deployment of their mobile applications and data. Their product is powerful – yet easy to use – and sets the standard for secure mobile app customer experience. Here’s why we decided to invest:
Mobile App Development and the No-Code Software Revolution
Mobile applications are an essential component of enterprises’ information technology architecture. The last decade has witnessed the emergence of powerful mobile devices capable of supporting new, high value, low latency apps which process significant amounts of data at the edge of the network. App development is typically led by business transformation leaders, whose mission is to build tools that empower customers, employees and suppliers. This is a difficult task in itself: developers must ensure not only that the apps deliver the desired business impact, but that they can thrive on multiple operating systems (and multiple versions of such systems!).
What happens when an enterprise requires its apps to incorporate security features such as encryption and authentication? This is a pressing problem for any mobile-mature organisation, as over 84% of all cyberattacks happen at the application layer. The reality is that hard-coding security into mobile applications requires specialist programming skills most enterprises lack, and app security comes second to building a working commercial product. Unfortunately, many apps sit on the bench until developers find a way to embed security features, or they might be shuttered indefinitely because the cost of integrating and maintaining security standards is prohibitive.
The advent of no-code platforms like Blue Cedar is a game changer for cybersecurity implementation. Chief Information Security Officers and Digital Officers want to buy “silent” security: technology that integrates security features into business processes without requiring investment in expensive engineering support and maintenance. No-code security accelerators empower the 10x app developer by seamlessly integrating powerful security tools into apps quickly and cost-effectively. Adhering strictly to the no-code development discipline is challenging, but software companies that do so will be rewarded with a sustainable competitive edge: Gartner forecasts that by 2020, at least 50% of all new IT line-of-business applications will be created with Rapid Application Development toolsets such as a no-code platform.
Best in Class Enterprise Security
Sometimes enterprises let security standards slip in their rush to bring an app to market. It is best practice for enterprise mobile applications to meet the same security standards the enterprise applies to its broader IT architecture. This means embedding features like authentication and encryption into the complex and diverse group of activities performed within an app. Blue Cedar’s platform has been tested by some of the most demanding customers on the planet and delivers best-in-class enterprise cybersecurity to protect mobile apps. Partnering with leading ISVs has required the company’s software to meet a rigorous series of benchmarks, and our own research indicates that Blue Cedar’s own Accelerators, including secure edge encryption, edge authentication and secure communication, can be an important element of a defence in depth security strategy. Most importantly, Blue Cedar operates on a native big data architecture, which enables it to apply advanced analytics at scale to draw insights from captured metadata. In the future their ability to derive endpoint context for security and application analytics will be a strong competitive advantage.
Trusted Partner to Leading Security Software Vendors
What’s been most impressive about Blue Cedar is how responsive some of the world’s leading security software vendors have been to the idea of partnering with the company to develop their mobile application security solution. Embedding third-party security software into a mobile app is difficult, and this has historically been a major barrier for leading ISVs, such as BlackBerry and Arxan. These and other ISVs recognized that Blue Cedar’s platform enables customers to automatically integrate their security features and maintain that integration in a cost-efficient manner. As a result, Blue Cedar has rapidly forged impressive go-to-market partnerships that enable its partners to address the needs of large corporates in the financial services, healthcare and industrial sectors. This tells me that the company is right on the money when it comes to identifying and addressing a major need in the security marketplace.
With this investment C5 Capital joins a leading group of venture capitalists including Benhamou Global Ventures, Generation Ventures, Grayhawk Capital, and Sway Ventures on the board of the company. We are thrilled to welcome John, Kevin and the entire Blue Cedar team into the C5 family and look forward to working with them as the company moves into its next phase of growth.