We are excited to share today’s news from UpWest Labs portfolio company SentinelOne as they announce $70M in Series C to meet growing demand to replace traditional antivirus. In January 2013, UpWest became the first investor in SentinelOne, and we have been fortunate to help them in their fantastic growth since then. You can read the full announcement here.
SentinelOne is shaping the future of endpoint security with an integrated platform that unifies the detection, prevention and remediation of threats initiated by nation states, terrorists, and organized crime.
SentinelOne has achieved dramatic growth in the last 12 months as more organizations seek to replace aging antivirus solutions with SentinelOne’s Endpoint Protection Platform which can prevent, detect and remediate malware, exploit and insider-based attacks without the need of signatures or cloud access. SentinelOne’s next-generation endpoint protection platform is supported on Windows, MacOS and Linux.
“Confidence remains dismally low when it comes to traditional antivirus’ ability to stop anything but the most mundane threats. Even vendors that are now touting machine learning-based file-scanning, and artificial intelligence capabilities are in fact pursuing a very narrow approach, and only an incremental improvement – if any – to a much broader problem,” said Tomer Weingarten, co-founder and CEO of SentinelOne. “The time is now to migrate away from these ineffective technologies that remain focused on only a subset of threats and replace with a next-generation endpoint protection platform that’s been tested and proven to stop even the most advanced cyber threats.”
This Series C round brings the company’s total funding to $110M. Redpoint Ventures led the round along with new investment from Ashton Kutcher and Guy Oseary’s firm, Sound Ventures. Existing investors Third Point Ventures, Data Collective, Granite Hill Capital Partners, Westly Group, and SineWave Ventures.
With this new investment, the company plans to continue international expansion with increased investment in global sales infrastructure and deepening its executive bench.
When we first met Tomer and Almog, SentinelOne co-founders, they just began their journey. With nothing more than a demo, they were determined to go straight to Silicon Valley and capture meaningful customers from the get-go. We are excited to be part of their journey, and look forward to continuing to support their growth 🙂
Below is an interview we did with Tomer, CEO & Co-founder of SentinelOne, that sheds light on the team’s mindset and how UpWest connected with them.
Building A Big Company From Day One
Our founding team has always had a vision to build a big company from day one. We had a novel approach to cyber security and developed a method that could protect data from the most intense threats. We knew from the start we wanted to market our solution to the biggest enterprise companies with the greatest security challenges. We were looking at various ways to get to the US market as soon as possible. When we connected with UpWest, it was an instant fit.
Exploring The Silicon Valley Ecosystem
It is always challenging to break into a new environment, but we knew that we needed to build our own network in Silicon Valley. Whether it was a question of building a better product or how to approach market influencers, UpWest was there for us to facilitate the initial connections and point us the the right direction. Then it was in our hands to take it and amplify to create our own strong ties in the valley ecosystem.
A Hustler’s Mentality And A Hacker’s Approach
Even before you raise funds and set up operations, you need to see if you can bring your product to market. One of the major questions we asked was whether our product could perform the way we envisioned it in the US market. While members on our team had already run and sold successful startups, finding big customers in the US was not viable from Israel. We could have stayed in Israel to raise funds and get initial customers, but we knew it was critical to our success to first get to our target audience. It was important that we speak to as many potential customers as we could to address their major concern and understand our potential – and do this sooner rather than later. We knew it was critical to verify and learn before we started architecturing our solution to build a better product suited to large US customers and could have only done that in the US market.
Disrupting An Industry
We built a product that is highly differentiated and cutting-edge and is trying to disrupt a market which has been stagnant for 20 years. To do so, we have teams in Israel and the US. It’s not easy, but having a strong product and presence in the US and having the best R&D team in Israel helps maintain our competitive advantage.
Company Culture And Community
The UpWest community is still a part of our company culture. Whenever we have a certain goal, whether it’s reaching a specific person, or getting into a strategic event, our team never hesitates to leverage our network and industry mentors for guidance. From business consideration to funding options, we can always benefit from bringing in an outside perspective. The UpWest community is like a family. It becomes part of your life.