LORCA names cyber accelerator participants

The London Office for Rapid Cybersecurity Advancement (LORCA) has announced the 17 scaleups selected to join its fifth cohort of cyber innovators.

After consulting with industry, security professionals, policymakers and a cross-spectrum of sectors, LORCA announced an open call in March for companies with solutions to challenges presented by a connected society, including supply chain security, digital identity and the digital risk associated with an increasingly connected world to apply.

The selected members have innovative solutions that relate to identity, the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud security, autonomous cyber defence and privacy.

LORCA also encouraged applications from under-represented founders, with 18 per cent of the fifth cohort including scaleups with female founders or leaders and 18 per cent with leaders from BAME backgrounds.

LORCA’s next 12-month accelerator will support members from across the UK’s cyber ecosystem, including ZeroGuard from Stratford-upon-Avon, RedHunt Labs from Royston in Hertfordshire, InsurTechnix from Cambridge, Cyberhive from Newbury and Academy of Cyber Security from Manchester.

It is also supporting four market entrants that are headquartered overseas in Israel (ITsMineand ContextSpace Solutions), The Netherlands (BreachLock) and Argentina (VU Security) which want to enter the UK as part of their international expansion.

The goal of LORCA is to help scale the cyber innovations industry and society need most, while acting as a global landing pad and launchpad for cyber companies. It also cultivates links with cyber hubs and sister programmes from across the UK’s maturing cyber ecosystem. CyberFish has taken part in the HutZero programme, while TrustStamp is a graduate of the National Cyber Security Centre’s accelerator. Both have joined LORCA to accelerate the next phase of their scaleup journeys.

LORCA is delivered by Plexal, the innovation centre and co-working space established by Delancey based in London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Members of LORCA’s accelerator will also join Plexal’s growing cyber community and connect with Plexal’s partner Hub8, a workspace dedicated to cyber security in Cheltenham.

The year-long programme will support the 17 early-stage companies to grow, secure investment, access new markets and participate in overseas trade missions, with the ultimate aim of growing the British cyber security industry. LORCA takes no equity or intellectual property rights in the scaleups.

The programme is also delivered with Deloitte, which gives members technical and commercial support, and the Centre for Secure Information Technologies at Queen’s University Belfast, which provides engineering expertise and remote testing facilities. Members are also able to engage closely with industry, including directly with LORCA’s corporate partners - including Lloyds Banking Group, Dell Technologies and Kudelski Security - through events, forums and introductions to LORCA’s international network.

LORCA launched in June 2018 with funding from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. To date, the programme has significantly surpassed its investment target, with venture capital funding for LORCA companies now at £141 million and over 650 commercial contracts signed.

Most recently, cohort three member CounterCraft received $5 million in funding and cohort one alumni CyberOwl raised £1.8 million. HSBC invested $7 million in LORCA alumni Privitar in June following the company’s $80 million Series C investment in April.

Saj Huq, director of LORCA, said: “The pandemic has accelerated many emerging digital trends, as well as the inevitable risks that accompany them.

"The arrival of our fifth cohort highlights that there is world-leading talent and cutting-edge technology available to address these challenges and enable secure, societal-wide digital transformation."

Digital infrastructure minister Matt Warman added: “We are committed to helping our innovative cyber security startups thrive and maintain our position as Europe's leading tech hub.

“This initiative will see some of the brightest minds from across the country benefit from expert advice to turn their creative ideas into practical business tools and develop the cyber security technology of tomorrow."

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