Check Point Software Technologies has launched its CyberUp program, an initiative that will support Israel’s growing network of cybersecurity start-ups by opening up market opportunities with its established customers and providing access to potential investors. As well as guiding successful participants through the crucial stages of growth, CyberUp will in turn give Check Point customers access to cutting edge Israeli innovation.
Unlike other start-up programs, CyberUp is focused solely on the cybersecurity sector. Candidates are carefully selected, vetted, and chosen only if they have a mature, deployable solution that is of value to Check Point’s existing customers. The first batch has already launched, with seven early-growth companies selected to take part. These are Cyberpion, Grip Security, Infinipoint, Reflectiz, Sentra, Suridata and Zero Networks.
Israel has earned its reputation as ‘the start-up’ nation, accommodating 97 unicorns each valued over $1bn, according to global Israeli startup founders club Techaviv. Investment in the start-up ecosystem is also increasing, with Israeli companies securing €5.4bn in deal value in the first half of 2022, up from €4.2bn in the second half of 2021.
CyberUp is the brainchild of Noa Zilberman, who joined Check Point from Odo Security, a cybersecurity start-up she co-founded. As well as being an accelerator, the program will also support early-stage companies in the sector and the next generation of cyber entrepreneurs. She commented: “Check Point has been instrumental in the success of many Israeli cyber start-ups. Some 40 companies have been founded by former employees, and almost everyone in the cyber space has crossed paths with Check Point at some stage.”
CyberUp is a 16-week program where start-ups gain exposure to the global cybersecurity market with introductions to customers and insights from leading CISOs, all guided by an expert customer advisory board. One innovative element of the program is the bi-weekly in-person briefings at Check Point’s Innovation Center. This provides a space where participants can meet and discuss ideas with delegations of customers and explore future collaborations. There will also be a series of “Intimate CISO Talks,” where start-ups can actively engage with customers on the key challenges they are facing. “This active one to one engagement with real customers and experts in the space sets CyberUp apart from other programs based simply on mentoring and lectures,” added Zilberman.
In addition to the CISO talks and in-person sessions, participants can also take part in joint marketing initiatives with Check Point on the CyberTalk site and within the CheckMates user community, which will give them exposure to thousands of customers worldwide. At the end of the program, participants will be invited to the US for in-person meetings with senior CISOs and international VCs, as well as taking part in events such as RSA, Black Hat and Check Point’s own CPX conference.
As well as helping established organizations, Check Point is also giving something back to the community by supporting early-stage start-ups under the Eco-System Development part of the program. This includes quarterly cyber breakfasts attended by entrepreneurs CISOs and VCs, and a twice-yearly innovation event where start-ups can present to and engage with experts as well as one to one meeting opportunities.