Guardsquare, a Belgium-based mobile security company, has raised $29 million in funding from Battery Ventures. In conjunction with this funding round, Battery general partner Dharmesh Thakker and Battery principal Paul Morrissey are joining Guardsquare’s board of directors.
GuardSquare’s technology is actually embeded in more than a quarter of Android apps on the market today. With this funding round, Guardsquare is going to aggressively invest in sales, marketing, R&D, and customer success efforts. Guardsquare’s CEO Roel Caers pointed out that the company’s products are becoming more essential to “global brands of all stripes.”
For example, Guardsquare’s technology addresses a growing problem for enterprises rapidly undergoing digital transformation in industries ranging from finance to healthcare to insurance.
“As companies deploy rich applications quickly—including apps tied to new, Internet-enabled devices—the attack surface for hackers and other bad actors is increasing, making cybersecurity an increasingly complex problem,” said Heidi Rakels, co-founder and president of Guardsquare. “Our products are being used by the world’s biggest banks, IT providers and credit-card companies to protect their brands—and their bottom lines—against such malicious threats.”
Rakels founded Guardsquare with Eric Lafortune to develop security products to complement the original ProGuard product, which is an open source project focused on optimizing Java performance and Android applications. This technology is now used on about 25% of all Android apps.
“We are extremely happy to welcome Battery as a shareholder,” added Guardsquare board member and early investor Jürgen Ingels. “This enables us to put a turbo on further growth. It is also a great endorsement of the Belgian tech scene.”
Guardsquare is also known for designing and building a security product for Android apps called DexGuard. And the company built a security product for iOS apps called iXGuard.
“Mobile technology, Internet-enabled sensors and other mega technology trends are transforming the cybersecurity landscape, and there is growing recognition that endpoint security—securing your actual mobile apps on the devices were people are using them—is increasingly critical for organizations,” explained Thakker. “We were also impressed with how Guardsquare has developed a compelling business model from a viral and successful open-source project, something we are seeing more and more with open-source companies in a variety of sectors. The company’s growth is extremely impressive, and we are honored to partner with Roel, Heidi and Eric to take Guardsquare’s business to the next level.”