Data Management Startup Immuta Gets $100M Acquisition

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Immuta, a provider of data privacy and access control services, today announced the closing of a $100 million Series E round at a $1 billion valuation, bringing the company’s total funding to $267 million. NightDragon led the funding with Snowflake Ventures as well as existing investors Dell Technologies Capital, DFJ Growth, IAG, Intel Capital, March Capital, StepStone, Ten Eleven Ventures and Wipro Ventures.

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According to CEO Matthew Carroll, the new cash will be used to support product development and research and development, as well as expand Immuta’s sales, marketing, customer and support team success, and secure “key” data monitoring acquisitions. “The pandemic has accelerated the move to the cloud and increased the need for cloud data security,” he told TechCrunch in an email interview. “We don’t see a slowdown.”

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Immuta was founded in 2015 by Stephen Thau and Carroll, who began his career as a US Army intelligence officer in Baghdad. Prior to founding Immuta, Carroll spent several years with the CSC consulting group after it acquired his previous employer, 42six Solutions, where Thaw also worked.

Carroll has led data and analytics fusion programs and advised the US government on data management and analytics issues at CSC. “I quickly realized the power of data and the ways in which managing large amounts of critical information can streamline operations of all kinds,” he added. “With proper data access controls, organizations can truly maximize the value of their data.”

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Carroll presents Immuta as an “enterprise scale” alternative to the manual processes of creating and enforcing data policies. He claims that many IT teams are using tools based on role-based access control technologies that emerged in the 90s that are not well suited to new privacy rules such as GDPR as well as CCPA. Compounding the problem, Carroll argues, these tools can create “data locality” issues in situations where data needs to be moved from local data stores to the cloud. For example, a company may operate in a specific set of countries around the world, but store data in a data center in Germany.

According to Carroll, surveys show that organizations face a number of challenges when it comes to developing data policies. Specialists in recent A TechRepublic survey cited corporate culture, lack of knowledge, financial costs, and poor integration with existing tools as one of the top blockers. The public sector is grappling with the same issues identified in a study by the Center for Digital Government (CDG), a national research and advisory institute. CDG informed in May that a framework for a state and local government digital privacy solution was only in its “initial stages”.


Image credits: Immuta

“It’s a matter of understanding what rules apply, as well as how to apply them – that can get complicated very quickly,” Carroll said. “All of this is happening as organizations try to speed up access to data. The most common problem we hear is that organizations are trying to innovate, trying to move their business, but there is a gap between IT and the business and they have to choose between compliance or providing fast access to data.”

From private sector organizations such as S&P Global and Mercedes-Benz Group to the US Army, Immuta customers have access to a dashboard designed to automate aspects of data policy aggregation. It provides tools to detect, classify and label sensitive information in accordance with contractual obligations and regulations. In addition, Immuta may audit data usage and collect information to show users what data was accessed, when, by whom, and for what purpose.

The platform integrates with data centers, on-premises servers and hybrid cloud services including Databricks and Snowflake. (Recently, Immuta launched a software-as-a-service deployment, Immuta SaaS.) According to Carroll, any user accessing services where Immuta is integrated benefits from using Immuta to control access to data.

“Immuta takes a different approach to several newer alternatives where we have written code that integrates naturally into the compute layer, meaning that the consumer sees no performance penalty when applying data access control policies to queries,” Carroll said. “Immuta works as a layer of data security and privacy in client environments… [it] improves compliance and reduces risk, [which] means teams can securely share large amounts of data and easily validate data usage as required with full transparency of all data accesses.”

Data management is a hot field with one analytics firm prediction that by 2026 it will be worth $6 billion. Immuta’s competitors include TrustArc, which helps companies implement privacy and compliance programs. Other Privitar, OneTrustas well as Big ID.

Fortunately for Immuta, venture capital sees great opportunities in data privacy. Venture spending in the broader security segment rose to nearly $30 billion in 2021, more than double the previous year’s total. according in Impulse Cyber.

“We are very well funded,” Carroll said, retorting when asked about Immuta’s total client base and annual recurring income. “[We] see the recent technology reality check as a great opportunity to strengthen our market position and expand through new acquisitions.”

Stephan William, Vice President of Corporate Enterprises at Snowflake Ventures, added in an emailed statement: “The importance of data security is only growing and we strongly believe in Immuta as both a partner and an investor. With enhanced data protection, Snowflake customers can further accelerate their use of cloud data, which is a win for everyone.”

Boston, Massachusetts-based Immuta says it currently has more than 250 employees and plans to double its headcount over the next 18 months.

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