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Startup Spotlight:
Cyvatar co-founder secures O-1 visa to scale rapidly growing cybersecurity-as-a-service startup

In 2019, Craig Goodwin and Corey White founded Cyvatar: a startup that levels the playing field in the cybersecurity market by providing an end-to-end security solution for businesses of any size and budget. Since then, Craig and the Cyvatar team have been on a trajectory to the moon and beyond. In June 2021, Cyvatar raised $9 million in Series A funding, amounting to a total of $12 million in less than a year. On top of that, Craig secured an O-1 visa, a critical move to serve the rapidly growing U.S. customer base.

Filling a Gap in Cybersecurity for SMBs

After 18 years of working as a CISO leading cybersecurity teams, Craig noticed something was missing among the available cybersecurity products. He and Corey set out to fix

that with Cyvatar, which Craig says “focuses on democratizing cybersecurity, making it easy for smaller businesses to protect themselves and scale fast and efficiently” 

“Our vision is to simplify cybersecurity,” Craig said. “We’re offering it as a service so that gaining a high level of security is possible for smaller businesses, who may not need an entire security team. Instead of hiring one FTE for $150,00 plus, businesses turn to Cyvatar’s monthly, fixed price subscription that includes the people, process, and technology needed for a robust cybersecurity strategy.”

Unlike most other cybersecurity companies, Cyvatar focuses on all security aspects to enable companies to go from zero security to fully implemented, configured, and remediated security within one platform, rather than interfacing with 20 different vendors and tools to fix various aspects of their security system. The Cyvatar Platform is a one-stop shop where all types of issues are identified and remediated by their team.

Identifying Problems Without Providing Solutions

Craig noticed that most cybersecurity options were ultimately useless for the businesses that bought them, being costly to implement and configure, with no guarantee of true remediation. From personal experience, Craig found that many products are highly complicated to install and may not work if installed improperly, leaving businesses still vulnerable to cyber-attacks.

Craig Goodwin, Co-founder

Additionally, many cybersecurity programs inform companies of the problems without solving them. “It’s like a doctor diagnosing you but refusing to treat you,” Craig pointed out. Instead of walking away with a more secure system, customers walk away with a longer to-do list. Companies are left with figuring out how to fix their system on their own. “None of these approaches are fixing cybersecurity issues,” Craig concluded. “People are still getting hacked every day.” And the problem is enormous. [1]Cybersecurity breaches are expected to reach $193 billion by 2028. 

The problem for many small and medium-sized businesses is that an in-house security team is too costly and unnecessary; figuring out complicated cybersecurity programs can be time-consuming and almost impossible for those who aren’t professionals. And traditional cyber vendors don’t help the situation with steep, out-of-the-box costs.  “What we set out to do is essentially simplify and make cybersecurity much more effortless in the same way Netflix, for example, makes consuming media much more seamless, or in the same way that a Gusto makes HR and payroll much more consumable. You don’t have to worry about all the complexity under the hood because you use it as a service. And that’s what we’ve built; we built cybersecurity-as-a-service (CSaaS),” Craig explained.”

Business Growth in the U.S.

About 80% of Cyvatar’s clients are based in the U.S., and the company’s growth is quickly accelerating. While the company is primarily virtual now due to COVID, Craig estimates that he’d be visiting the U.S. monthly if the pandemic didn’t prevent it. 

“It’s interesting how, since COVID, many people seem to think that we don’t need to communicate face-to-face anymore,” Craig reflected. “But we believe that in-person communication, whether it’s with investors or customers or partners, really solidifies relationships.”

Craig needed to easily travel into and out of the United States regularly to foster those in-person meetings, which prompted his interest in Legalpad and the O-1 visa. “I initially didn’t even know I was eligible for an O-1 visa,” Craig admitted. However, he saw its advantages after working with the Legalpad team. 

“I was surprised at how easy it was to get the O-1”, Goodwin said. “The simplicity Legalpad brought to an extremely complex process was impressive, and the information was clear and direct in terms of what I needed to do.”

With $9 million in recent funding and an approved O-1 visa, Craig and the Cyvatar team are primed and ready to scale the business to serve its fast-growing customer base and demand for cybersecurity. “Having the visa takes a lot of unnecessary pressure off me,” Craig continued. “As a founder, worrying about where and when I can travel is the last thing I need.”


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About the author:

Allison Davy

Vice President Marketing, Legalpad

Allison helps startup founders from around the world navigate the complex U.S. immigration system so they can pursue their goals and purpose.