Tessian and its product-first culture

Great software companies are built on products that combine innovative use of technology with the solving of problems in an intrinsically human way. This is very much the case at our portfolio company, Tessian.

Cybersecurity is one of the more technical fields within software in general and using machine learning to understand how people in a corporation communicate in order to spot unusual behaviour is certainly innovative. However, as I have found working with Tim, Ed and Tom since we invested in the company, the really unique thing they do is infuse that technology with a product culture that always relates first to its user.

This culture permeates everything about the company. The launch product of the company focused on security breaches we all cause through the simplest of human errors — the mis-addressed email. From day one, the founders invested heavily in customer success and user delight. Even the way the data science team has been organized balances thoughtfully for blue-sky research while ensuring the best ideas are rapidly incorporated into product to solve user problems.

From a product perspective, this focus means that when Tessian gets rolled out, many security teams get glowing positive feedback from their users. People who are excited the product stopped them from making a mistake or saved them from an erroneous click and literally send thank you emails. To say this is unusual in the deployment of security systems is a huge understatement — many security systems are outright hated, most seen at least as a tiresome, necessary evil; Tessian is different.

From a company perspective, the focus has delivered in two ways. First, incredible growth — the product’s popularity means the company has spread like wildfire to hundreds of customers around the world. This in turn has attracted investment, including a round announced today that was led by Sequoia, one of the most storied firms in Silicon Valley. Secondly, it has also delivered a great place to work — where big technical problems are solved but where those solutions deliver real customer value and delight every day. If there’s one thing I know about a company that’s just raised $40M, it’s that it’ll be hiring fast — if you’re interested, drop them a line today!