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Tampa Bay Wave Welcomes 15 Cybersecurity Startups into the 2023 CyberTech|X Accelerator Cohort

2023 CyberTech|X Cohort Startup Companies Founders

2023 CyberTech|X Cohort Startup Companies Founders

The CyberTech|X Accelerator brings the most innovative cyber tech startups to Tampa Bay, a nationally-recognized hub for cybersecurity talent and innovation

TAMPA, FLORIDA, USA, January 23, 2023 / -- Tampa Bay Wave, Inc. (Wave), a nonprofit technology accelerator helping entrepreneurs transform innovative ideas into real-world solutions and scalable businesses, is proud to announce the CyberTech|X 2023 Accelerator program cohort consisting of incredible high-growth cybersecurity startups from across the United States and abroad, including companies from Australia, Israel, Mexico, and Singapore. Eleven of the fifteen startups are led by underrepresented founders. Key funding partners include A-LIGN, KnowBe4 and EY; plus strategic partners: 360 Advanced and Bank of America.

On October 5, 2022, the U.S. Economic Development Administration awarded Tampa Bay Wave
a $2 million federal grant in order to foster regional innovation clusters in cybersecurity, fintech,
and healthtech in the greater Tampa Bay region over the next three years. This grant will also provide Tampa Bay Wave with additional resources for supporting innovative technology companies in need of venture capital as well as those with R&D related technologies in need of government funding from the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs.

The CyberTech|X 2023 Accelerator is a 3-month tech business accelerator program and offers companies access to key resources such as a dedicated team of experts, mentoring from notable tech founders and cybersecurity industry giants, sales training, pitch coaching, and investor introductions in an environment designed to support and drive high-scale growth. Companies in the program will also participate in Wave’s Pitch Night at the conclusion of the program on March 29 to pitch their companies to an audience of accredited investors, venture capitalists, Tampa Bay community members and cybersecurity industry leaders.

The program will also serve as a link between the region’s tech startup community and other cybersecurity workforce development efforts, such as the University of South Florida’s cybersecurity degree programs, Cyber Florida, and other community partners .

Beyond the 3-month long program, selected participants will also receive ongoing support through Tampa Bay Wave’s CORE membership, which provides year-round mentorship, strategic introductions to investors and customers, and other valuable services to further accelerate company development. Also, Tampa Bay Wave is the only GAN-accredited accelerator program in the State of Florida; thus, selected companies will also have the benefit of becoming a member of the Global Accelerator Network which includes $50,000+ worth of discounts and other perks.

“It’s no secret that Florida has seen a major influx of entrepreneurs and investors relocating from traditional tech hubs. People across the country are finally recognizing what those of us in Florida already know… which is that our technology & startup ecosystems have been experiencing tremendous growth over the past 5-10 years, including in sectors like cybersecurity” said Linda Olson, President and Founder of Tampa Bay Wave. “As cybersecurity threats continues to rise, programs like the CyberTech|X Accelerator can go a long way to address these growing security concerns, while showcasing Tampa Bay’s tech and cybersecurity talent and helping advance Wave’s mission to build Florida’s innovation economy. "

The 2023 cohort will be the CyberTech|X Accelerator’s third cohort. The inaugural 2021 program was deemed highly successful, with roughly 50% of the companies closing their funding rounds within six months of Demo Day plus two exits (acquisitions). One cohort member, Refactr, was acquired by SOPHOS. Refactr’s founder Mike Fraser is now Vice President of DevSecOps for SOPHOS and continues volunteering as a mentor for Tampa Bay Wave. Another member, Phylum, closed a $15 million Series A round led by ClearSky with participation from Atlassian Ventures, SixThirty, First In™, and TechOperators.

The 2022 cohort built upon the success of year one with multiple companies successfully closing funding rounds including Redactable, a NY-based AI-driven redaction solution. Another 2022 cohort member, Crashtest Security out of Germany was acquired by Veracode in December.

The startups selected for the 2023 cohort continue the trend of strong national and international applicants, as well as a diverse maturity set. Some of the startups are in the early revenue stages, others are currently generating more than $1 million in annual recurring revenue (ARR), including one with at least $4 million ARR. Cumulatively, the group has raised over $28 million in external capital, including one above $10 million. Several founders are also alumni of Techstars, Draper House, and other leading accelerators.

“The Cybertech|X 2023 cohort reflects cybersecurity startups from the United States and abroad.” said Dr. Richard Munassi, Accelerator Managing Director. “The founders come from accomplished backgrounds, including PayPal, Infosys, Fannie Mae, McAfee, IBM, Intuit, Boston Consulting Group, HP, Accenture, Raytheon, Rolls Royce, Red Hat, SAIC, Verizon, State Farm, Northrop Grumman, Deloitte, Mitre, Ernst & Young, and Toyota. Founder backgrounds also include time at premier academic institutions, including Stanford’s MBA program, Johns Hopkins, West Point, The University of Chicago Booth School of Business, and MIT. Veterans are also represented from the Army, Navy, and Air Force. Top to bottom, they are companies solving real problems led by world class founders, and we are proud to have them joining the Tampa Bay Wave portfolio.”

The CyberTech|X 2023 Accelerator cohort includes:

Avertro CyberHQ® is a cyber command SaaS platform that helps leaders manage, measure, and report on their cybersecurity performance and make business-driven decisions.
CEO: Ian Yip
Location: Sydney, Australia

BreachQuest is building Priori to reimagine the incident response process and minimize breach cost and downtime. Priori delivers speed, scale and automation to incident response teams that currently rely on a labor intensive approach.
CEO: Shaun Gordon
Location: Dallas, TX

CleverFi helps businesses and providers to deliver the most secure and reliable WiFi experience to their customers and guests.
CEO: Mario Soave
Location: Austin, TX

Cyvatar is leading the future of cybersecurity with effortless, fully managed security subscriptions. As the first cybersecurity-as-a-service (CSaaS) provider, Cyvatar empowers our members to achieve successful security outcomes by providing the people, process, and technology required for cybersecurity success.
CEO: Corey White
Location: Irvine, CA

DeviceTotal’s auto-prevention attack platform provides contextual risk analysis across an organization’s devices and networks so companies can manage control and eliminate their device’s risk.
CEO: Dr. Carmit Yadin
Location: Tel Aviv, Israel

Hackmetrix helps LatAm Startups and Small and Medium Businesses to prove their security standing by allowing them to achieve compliance certifications (such as ISO 27001 and PCI) and stay safe through Pentesting and Cloud Monitoring Tools.
CEO: Adriel Araujo
Location: Mexico City, Mexico

Infiltron Software Suite
Infiltron is a proactive, real-time IoT cybersecurity solution, leveraging technologies such as Ai, Blockchain, and Quantum to provide innovative cybersecurity protection. Every system that integrates with Infiltron has a less reactive approach to protecting its data and devices in real time.
CEO: Chasity Wright
Location: Atlanta, GA

Keep Aware
Keep Aware protects organizations and their employees from cyber threats through behavioral analytics. The team developed a browser-based solution that blocks phishing, data loss, and malicious downloads, while embedding cybersecurity awareness into every employee's work day.
CEO: Ryan Boerner
Location: Austin, TX

Phalanx provides security & visibility to data that resides outside databases (unstructured data) with Zero Trust Data Access (ZTDA).
CEO: Ian Garrett
Location: Arlington, VA

Privacy Lock
Privacy Lock offers one solution to global compliance with consumer privacy laws (GDPR, CCPA, etc.). Privacy is a fast expanding regulatory space and most businesses are not ready to handle the volume of consumer privacy requests and regulatory reporting requirements in various jurisdictions in the years ahead.
CEO: David Ritter
Location: Denver, CO

Seccuri is the global cybersecurity talent tech platform. Seccuri's proprietary ML/AI algorithm allows the platform to evaluate cybersecurity ecosystem data to support talent acquisition, talent upskilling, and reskilling.
CEO: Juanita Duque
Location: Palo Alto, CA

Stratawise is a Zero-Trust no-code/low-code SaaS platform for process automation. It enables security-driven organizations to safely digitize processes thereby improving communication, transparency, and efficiency while easing continuous improvement.
CEO: George Panicker
Location: Tampa, FL

Vultara is a web-based Cyber Security Management System (CSMS) dedicated to cyber-physical system manufacturers. Vultara automates cybersecurity engineering from concept design phase to post-development monitoring phase, enabling quick compliance to ISO/SAE 21434 and IEC 62443.
CEO: Yuanbo Guo
Location: Detroit, MI

X80 Security
X80 quantifies Cyber Risk in dollars and helps CISOs maximize their budget.
CEO: Simon Janin
Location: Singapore

Zendata is the essential platform for CISO’s and compliance leaders to understand and mitigate their privacy risks through continuous monitoring of assets, starting with their websites.
CEO: Narayana Pappu
Location: San Francisco, CA

Participating companies will benefit from the Tampa Bay Wave’s CyberTech|X Advisory Council, made up of cybersecurity experts from Wave’s Mentor Network, as well as representatives from the program’s funding partners and other cybersecurity experts. Members of the Advisory Council include:

Angelo Santos, Manager Deputy Account Lead, Accenture Federal Services
Asim Murad, SVP, Technology Partnership & Business Development, Bank of America
Brent Hambly, Director Enterprise Security Transformation, Accenture
Cathleen Ryan Reneer, Managing Director, JP Morgan Chase
Erich Kron, Cybersecurity Expert and Evangelist, KnowBe4
Ernest Ferraresso, Associate Director, Cyber Florida
Kishen Sridharan, Cybersecurity Partnership and Outreach Executive, Office of the CISO, Raymond James
Lee Gray, Brigadier General (Retired), U.S. Army
Mal Ensmann, Sr. Program Planner, Cyber Florida
Mike Fraser, VP of DevSecOps, Sophos (formerly Refactr)
Petar Besalev, SVP Cybersecurity and Privacy Services, A-LIGN
Rolando Torres, Co-Founder & Chief Operating Officer, abacode
Russ Miller, CTO Secure Access, OPSWAT
Scott Margolis, Managing Director, Data Privacy & Protection; RegTech, Ernst & Young
Vince Rocca, CIO, Digital Hands

To learn more about the CyberTech|X Accelerator Program, visit: .

Tampa Bay Wave, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit providing entrepreneurs with facilitated access to the resources, expertise, and capital they need to grow vibrant technology-based companies in Tampa Bay. Since March 2013, Tampa Bay Wave has supported more than 450 tech startups thanks to grant funding from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), plus support from its economic development partners Hillsborough County and the City of Tampa. Tampa Bay Wave also receives support from individuals such as Michael and Korrine Fraser and Kyle Taylor, founder of The Penny Hoarder, as well as from partners such as A-LIGN, Bank of America, Bellini Better World, Encore Bank/STi, EY, Florida Blue, Florida Funders, Foley & Lardner, JPMorgan Chase Foundation, KnowBe4, MacDonald Ventures, Nielsen Foundation, Rays/Rowdies Foundation, Trenam Law, Truist Foundation, and Vinik Family Foundation. Tampa Bay Wave is also a member of the GAN network of accelerators. For more information, visit

Dee Garcia
Tampa Bay Wave, Inc.
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