Former Optus Business managing director John Paitaridis heads up CyberCX, with Alastair MacGibbon, the government’s former cybersecurity tsar, as chief strategy officer. The company was formed through a union of 12 niche cybersecurity players and is on a mission to become a force in the booming sector.
CyberCX has signed up some big-name public sector and ASX-listed clients including Origin Energy and Star Entertainment Group, Judo Bank, The Australian Football League, Tennis Australia and the Brisbane Airport Corporation. With cybersecurity attacks making headlines, CyberCX helps its clients manage cyber risk, respond to incidents and build resilience. Just last month, it worked with hospital and aged-care operator St Vincents to respond to an incident on its network.
The sector’s growth has attracted private equity interest. Quadrant scooped up a trio of New Zealand cybersecurity businesses last year – after booking an eight-times return on Arq Group – and then there’s the big one, Telstra’s purchase of cloud services business Versent, which showed strategics will pay up for a high-growth, loss-making business. BGH itself been busy in tech. Last year, it snapped up Waterman Capital’s IT services business Fusion5, and dual-listed church payments platform Pushpay. The firm was founded by trio Ben Gray, Robin Bishop and Simon Harle in 2017.
A CyberCX divestment could be the first in what’s being tipped to be the year of private equity secondary sales. Impatient investors are pestering funds to return capital after a dearth of realisations in the past three years. On the buyout backlog are Navis Capital’s Device Technologies, PAG Asia Capital’s Craveable Brands (the operator of Red Rooster, Oporto and Chargrill Charlie) and KKR’s plumped-up Laser Clinics.