Ballistic Ventures Introduces BallisticX to Propel Early-stage Cybersecurity Startups


Ballistic Ventures, the venture capital firm dedicated exclusively to funding and incubating entrepreneurs and innovations in cybersecurity, today announced the launch of BallisticX, a new platform for portfolio companies. BallisticX includes the appointment of a distinguished advisory board, as well as services to help early-stage startup founders and their teams advance their businesses and cybersecurity.

“Capital alone is not enough. Young companies with new innovations need strategic advisors, design partners and a network of people who have lived their challenges. They also need access to curated, low-touch, high-impact services and support to help them build and grow fast,” said Ted Schlein, Chairman and General Partner of Ballistic Ventures. “BallisticX is our commitment, beyond capital, to ensuring our portfolio companies have the team and resources they need to make an impact.”

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Ballistic’s new advisory board includes some of the most respected leaders in cybersecurity. Their experience will help influence Ballistic’s investments, guide portfolio companies in their growth, unite a new network of cybersecurity leaders and much more. The advisory board includes:

  • Sue Barsamian – With 35 years of experience as a sales and marketing executive, Barsamian spent a decade at Hewlett Packard, including as General Manager of the Enterprise Cybersecurity Products business. She is a board member of several public companies, including Box, Five9 and NortonLifelock, and focuses on helping high-growth SaaS and cybersecurity companies to scale.“For any entrepreneur, having the right partners can be just as important as having the right product-market fit,” said Barsamian. “With the Ballistic team’s industry expertise and proven track record, they’re the best partner out there for early-stage cybersecurity startups, and I look forward to working with the team to support their portfolio companies in growing their businesses and securing our future.”
  • Tim Eades – With over 20 years of CEO experience, Eades has deep expertise in driving high growth for cybersecurity and enterprise software companies. He is currently CEO of vArmour and is also a renowned mentor and investor in the cybersecurity market. Previously, he was the CEO of Silver Tail Systems (until its acquisition by RSA). Eades was also CEO of (acquired by Proofpoint) and has held executive leadership positions at BEA Systems, IBM, Phoenix Technologies and Sana Security.
  • Andy Johnson – Johnson is the former head of M&A for HP Software and the former CFO of AT&T Cybersecurity and AlienVault. He has significant experience building prioritized M&A, divestiture and partnership roadmaps aligned to companies’ strategies.
  • Nicole Perlroth – Perlroth is The New York Times’ former lead cybersecurity reporter and author of The New York Times bestselling book “This Is How They Tell Me The World Ends.” Her investigations rooted out nation-state cyberattacks on American businesses and critical infrastructure, earning her critical acclaim.“Early on, it became very clear that Ballistic was not another venture fund; it is a mission fund dedicated to fixing one of the most complex challenges of our digital era,” said Perlroth. “It is an honor to join Ballistic as an advisor in that mission. It has always been my core belief that without a good story, technology cannot flow. I’m thrilled to help Ballistic’s entrepreneurs cut above the noise, home in on their message and unharness the innovation required to climb our way out.”
  • Holly Rollo – Rollo brings three decades of leadership and deep-rooted cybersecurity experience, including at RSA, Fortinet, FireEye, Cisco and SAP. She serves on multiple boards and is currently the CEO of Surge Strategies, a strategic marketing firm helping cybersecurity companies quickly build modern marketing engines and position themselves for successful outcomes.“Ballistic understands it takes more than great technology to create a thriving business in today’s frothy security market,” said Rollo. “Creating value includes building a strong market position and an exceptional customer experience. I’m thrilled to be on this mission with Ballistic to fuel the best ideas in the industry to shift the balance of power in today’s high-risk, digital world.”
  • Derek Smith – As a serial entrepreneur, Smith has delivered four successful technology startups, including market-defining cybersecurity companies Shape Security (acquired by F5 for more than $1B) and Oakley Networks (acquired by Raytheon), which he started from scratch.
  • Phil Venables – A renowned CISO for over 25 years across many industries and geographies, Venables will help drive the Ballistic Security Leaders Network, the firm’s new network of cybersecurity leaders. He brings not just deep security expertise but also broader experience of risk, resilience and technology strategy.“While we strive for security to be embedded in all products, we also need great security products to complement that,” said Venables. “The team of investors and advisors at Ballistic has the depth of expertise to tackle the dual objective and invest in the solutions that will truly improve cybersecurity.”

“This prestigious group of advisors is a critical step for Ballistic in cementing our position as the premier venture fund for entrepreneurs on the cutting edge of cybersecurity,” added Schlein. “Each of our members brings with them unmatched experience and invaluable expertise in a variety of essential domains. We look forward to benefiting from their wise counsel, and we’re thankful to have them alongside us as we help entrepreneurs define their ideas, scale their businesses, and make the world a safer place.”

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