It was an eventful fall for Perigee CEO and founder Mollie Breen. The former NSA employee participated in the TechCrunch Disrupt Startup Battlefield in September. She just completed her first Thanksgiving starting round and gave her a $ 1.5 million runway to start building the company.
The Outsiders Fund led the round with the participation of Westport, Contour Venture Partners, BBG Ventures, Innospark Ventures and a few individual investors.
Perigee wants to secure areas of the company such as HVAC systems or elevators that can interact with the company’s network but are often outside the typical range of network security monitoring. According to Breen, the company’s value proposition is about bridging the gap between network security and operational security. She said this has been a corporate blind security patch that is often caught between these two teams. Perigee offers a range of analytics to help the security team gain insight into this vulnerable area.
As Breen explained when we talked about their battlefield round in September, the solution learns normal behavior from the operating systems when interacting with the network and collects data such as: B. which systems and people normally access it. It can then determine when something appears to be off and truncate an abnormal act that may indicate hacker activity before it reaches the network.
She says that as the funded founder she knows exactly how rare this is, and one reason she wanted to post this funding round was to show other women who are considering starting a business this is is possible, even if this is possible remains difficult.
She plans to grow the company to around six people in the next 12 months, and Breen says she is thinking deeply about how to build a diverse organization. She says that starts with her investors and includes considering diversity in terms of gender, race, and age. She believes it is important to start with the earliest employees and is actively recruiting various candidates.
“I write a lot of cold emails, especially about attitudes. Part of this is because everything comes in with job vacancies and one cannot necessarily guarantee that it will be diverse. By writing cold emails, really following these people, and having these conversations, I’ve found a way to make sure I’m talking to people from different perspectives, ”she said.
As she looks to 2021, she ponders the best way to approach the office versus remote control and says that with some people it will likely be largely remote control. “I’m really balancing at this point, how do we really make the connections and with a lot of confidence make them strong and real and do it by balancing some elements of the remote knowing that the industry is going there and when you get one Business and wanting to be in a post-2020 world you will likely have to prepare for an element of remote working, ”she said.