Randvest Capital, the parent company of Randvest Technology Holdings, an investment firm owned and chaired by the former BCX co-founder and CEO Isaac Mophatlane, has invested in MyCybercare, a pure insuretech cyber insurance provider. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The Randvest Group’s core focus is leveraged acquisitions and strategic investments across various industries with a strong focus on technology companies. According to the company, Randvest takes a long term view on its investment strategy and targets businesses which will have high yielding annuity returns with significant growth prospects in the short to medium term period.
Mophatlane, who started BCX as his first business with his late brother Benjamin in 1996, and then went on to grow it to around 7000 staff until it was eventually acquired by Telkom in 2016, says he has a passion to work with enterpreneurs and management teams which have established strong values and discipline in the sectors in which they operate. His organisation typically invests in small to medium-sized companies, which have sound business strategies, backed by strong management teams driving unique product sets or service offerings which have the ability to save money and time for the end users.
One of the biggest growth sectors remains financial services and as it has rapidly become more tech focused, a massive number of opportunities have become available to provide new and innovative solutions especially to the insurance sector. Randvest is therefore currently invested in several tech based businesses which are playing on the global stage. This is where the growth is, the company says.
“I have been watching this space for several years. By the time I was ready to leave BCX, I had personally ridden the massive internet wave and seen the compounded annual growth and demand for internet-based solutions. As this was happening I also saw the risks growing and although most of the large businesses quickly adopted great cyber security strategies and systems, the small and medium sized businesses, let alone the ordinary man on the street, have completely fallen behind. For this reason I felt there was an early opportunity to get a foothold in the cyber insurance space in South Africa and then help to expand it internationally from there,” he says.
“Having spent the last 10 years working closely with customers in almost every sector of the economy across the continent and into Europe and the Middle East, and working closely with some of the biggest tech giants which have been seeing the global picture for a long time, I realised that cyber crime is definitely near the top of the agenda of many consumers, SMME’s and CIOs, and we see every indication that executives, organisations and private individuals are moving away from a generic view of cyber risk to develop security and risk strategies specifically for the areas of their business and lives that could be most seriously affected. Cyber insurance is becoming a crucial part of these strategies.”
Simon Campbell-Young, CEO of MyCybercare, says organisations, SMME’s and people in general across the board are battling to identify, analyse and mitigate the flood of online threats and targeted attacks that could wipe them out financially or totally paralyse their operations. “And as cyber risks and attacks grow in frequency and sophistication, many businesses and Consumers plus their insurers are discovering concerning gaps in the coverage provided by traditional insurance policies.”
Cyber insurance has historically focused mainly on a company’s digital assets, for example, customer and other sensitive data, Campbell-Young explains. “However, the insurance industry is starting to expand its offerings across both the intangible and tangible asset space.”
According to Mophatlane, as cyber attacks become more frequent, and their impacts more devastating, there is a massive opportunity for insurers positioning themselves for growth in the cyber-insurance arena. “We look to invest in businesses which have a clear strategy around a core set of solutions, then we help grow them and develop new sales channels, and while this is in motion and the customer base grows, that our solutions have the potential to continiously adapt and remain relevant for the end users, both from a pricing and service point of view,,and MyCybercare is definitely one of these.”
He says before making an investment, his investment team thoroughly evaluates the business dynamics of the industry in which the target company operates. “This evaluation places particular emphasis on the competitive position of the company, future market opportunities, and unique product or service offerings.”
Randvest’s geographical focus is on African companies with particular emphasis on Southern Africa. While founded in South Africa, MyCybercare has already expanded into the UK and the Middle East, with plans for further expansion into India.
Mophatlane describes Randvest as a ‘low volume, high value-add’ investment company that makes a limited number of investments and acquisitions each year. “We hope to play a significant role in the growth and development of MyCybercare. The cyber insurance industry is at the threshold of a major shift that comes hand in hand with real opportunities for insurers who are willing to adapt their offerings for this digital age,” he concludes.