Maritime and offshore system cyber risk management specialists, CyberOwl have successfully secured US$5.1M of investor funding to support the accelerated adoption of their Medulla cyber risk monitoring solution.

Research undertaken by the independent maritime research organisation, Thetius, the market-leading shipping legal firm, HFW and CyberOwl and published in the report entitled ‘The Great Disconnect’, found that shipowners pay more than $3 million on average in ransom on cyber-attacks.

The maritime sector has recently experienced one of the greatest periods of profitability in history and is heavily reinvesting these profits in digitalisation and the increased connectivity of their vessels. This makes shipping companies an attractive target for cyber-attacks. Therefore, there is an increasing urgency for improving the cyber security of shipboard systems.

However, securing shipboard systems is challenging due to the particular nature of shipping systems, the presence of legacy systems onboard ships, constraints in bandwidth, intermittent internet connectivity, the lack of cyber security knowledge and, talent within the sector.

As CyberOwl’s flagship product, Medulla addresses the shipping industry’s cyber security challenges by making it as easy as possible to secure remote, operational assets, such as those onboard ships.

The technology provides remote, protective monitoring for vessel IT and connected operational technology (OT) assets that help ship operators gain visibility, cybersecurity, and cyber compliance of their remote, marine systems.

During a recent funding round, CyberOwl secured follow-on investment from existing investors, 24Haymarket and Techstars in addition to confirming new investments from new investors, Brookstreet Equity Partners and Phaze Ventures.

The multi-million-pound investment will enable CyberOwl expand service capability and build on international growth, which to-date has been limited to the UK, Singapore, and Greece. The investment will also fund product development for the next generation of the Medulla software and the creation of an associated family of products to ensure CyberOwl’s proposition remains at the cutting edge and ahead of industry challenges.

CyberOwl is already working with many of the world’s largest maritime and offshore companies across the UK, EMEA and Asia Pacific including Eastern Pacific Shipping, Tufton Asset Management, Pacific International Lines, Pacific Carriers Limited and Swire.

Since launching Medulla in 2019, the company has experienced significant growth. It is supporting maritime companies to manage the cyber risk of shipboard systems on the c.2,000 vessels they manage. In 2022 so far, this represents growth of c.5x deployed vessels and a further c.3x in bookings.

Daniel Ng, CEO of CyberOwl, said “Cyber-securing shipping systems has become mission critical. This funding round gives us the rocket fuel to continue being the sector’s frontrunner. It enables us to ensure that our customers continue to experience the high-quality thought leadership, engagement, technology and service that CyberOwl is known for.”

Paul Tselentsis, CEO of 24Haymarket, said “CyberOwl is operating in an exciting space and in a sector that has seen hyper growth in the last few years. The fact that 24Haymarket are following on with a significant new investment speaks to the confidence we have in the mission and team.”

Omiros D. Sarikas, Managing Partner (CEO) of Brookstreet, said: “CyberOwl has significant synergies with our existing investment portfolio and our own mission at Brookstreet. We are thrilled to welcome CyberOwl to the Brookstreet family and to support the team in strengthening their position and growing their operations in the Greek maritime market.”

Abdullah Al-Shaksy, Co-Founder & CEO at Phaze Ventures, said: “We are extremely interested in the maritime supply chain and data analytics and CyberOwl is solving problems in these spaces, which makes them a fantastic fit. We are looking forward to furthering their mission in the GCC Cooperation Council (GCC) region.”