The funding, which has come from Triple Point Investment Management, Mercia, SIS Ventures, the Scottish Investment Bank, plus private investors, will support the company’s expansion and allow it to target new markets in Northern Europe. It follows its recent contract with the UK’s Home Office, which will see the technology being used by the Child Abuse Image Database (CAID) and rolled out to police forces nationally.
Cyan Forensics’ digital analysis tool can find terrorist handbooks or child sexual abuse material on devices within minutes, minimising forensic analysts’ time and allowing police to make decisions quickly and confidently. It can also help social media companies and cloud providers to find and block harmful content.
The company has recently signed a partnership with the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children in the US and been named as a winner of the prestigious PitchGovTech competition at the GovTech Summit in Paris.
A spin-out from Edinburgh Napier University, Cyan Forensics was founded in 2016 by Bruce Ramsay, a former police forensic analyst and now the company’s CTO, and Ian Stevenson, the CEO. Mercia backed the company from its inception, and has worked with the team to attract other investors. The latest funding round brings the total raised so far to £2.8m.
Ian Stevenson, CEO of Cyan Forensics, said: “We’re excited to have raised the funds which will now allow Cyan Forensics to deliver the next stage in our significant growth plan. We’re grateful to our existing investors for their continued confidence and support, and delighted to welcome the new investors joining us on this journey. A key focus will be expanding our reach within the UK as a result of our partnership with the Home Office and into international markets.”
Marcus Henderson, Investment Director with Mercia, said: “Cyan Forensics’ technology addresses some of the major challenges facing police and society – such as how to detect terrorist activity and child sexual abuse and prevent the spread of harmful content in the age of social media and the internet. The company has already achieved some major milestones and this investment will help it scale up its operations.”
Rob Halliday, Fund Manager with SIS Ventures, said: “Cyan Forensics’ mission is to deliver scalable technology to help law enforcement, social media and cloud companies detect, block and restrict distribution of harmful digital content and protect vulnerable groups. The business is extraordinarily well positioned for significant growth and impact creation over the next 18 months and SIS Ventures is looking forward to sharing and supporting that journey.”
Ian McLennan, Partner with Triple Point Investment Management, said: “Our Impact EIS Service is delighted to be part of this investment round in Cyan Forensics which is a splendid example of a growth business that is ‘doing well by doing good’ within our Children & Young People investment theme.”
Kerry Sharp, Director, Scottish Investment Bank, said: “Cyan Forensics is another fantastic example of how ground-breaking research originating in Scotland’s leading academic institutions is being used to tackle global issues. This latest round of investment will enable the company to further develop its cutting-edge technology and grow its business as it helps law enforcement adapt to the digital age.”