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Shark Tank’s Robert Herjavec Goes Trolling for Cybersecurity Firms

By May 25, 2015Article

You’ve probably tuned in to watch Robert Herjavec of “Shark Tank,” ABC’s Emmy Award-winning hit entrepreneurship reality show, get pitched by all sorts of companies. But Robert has been reeling in much bigger fish while trolling the cybersecurity waters – without his “Shark Tank” buddies. 

If “Mr. Wonderful” and Mark Cuban knew, they’d definitely want in.  

Cybersecurity doesn’t exactly sell on QVC or in retail fashion chains. But when you consider the cybersecurity market is growing from $71 billion in 2014 to $155+ billion by 2019 and Robert is accumulating a small fortune in that space, it’s possible that fellow sharks, Lorie and Daymond, might want a piece of the action anyway … if Robert wants to let them chip in on a deal. And shark Barbara? Well, all her commercial real estate will probably connect up to the Internet through building security systems like cloud-based video surveillance cameras; so she can’t honestly say “I don’t know anything about that, so I’m out.” 

“Shark Tank” describes Robert Herjavec as a technology entrepreneur – and he is one in real life. His company is hard-core security and nothing else. Headquartered in Toronto, Herjavec Group is one of Canada’s largest information security services companies. Herjavec Group is also recognized on the Cybersecurity 500 list of the world’s hottest and most innovative cybersecurity companies. 

Robert founded Herjavec Group in 2003. The company originally sold Checkpoint firewalls to corporations in Canada. In 2006, Herjavec Group acquired MetaComm and became Canada’s largest McAfee partner (and also one of the largest in North America). Then in 2010 Herjavec Group acquired Cyberklix, a leading managed security services provider. Next up in 2011 was Herjavec Group’s acquisition of information storage provider Zentra Computer Technologies. In 2014, Herjavec Group acquired Dallas, Texas-based Galaxy Tech. Another acquisition in 2014 was Sentry Metrics, an MSSP out of Toronto. And most recently Herjavec Group announced its acquisition of UK-based Sysec, a leading IT security solutions provider as part of a push into Europe. 

On TV, Robert is affable and usually smiling with a glint in his eye; and alongside Lorie, they seem like the friendliest sharks, if there is such a thing. But when Robert talks security, he’s downright serious. 

Here’s what Robert recently said when I asked him about the market opportunity in the managed security services provider (MSSP) space and Herjavec Group: 

“Large organizations have invested in a number of complex security technologies, from antivirus to IPS, firewalls, APT, NAC and DLP solutions. These technologies generate vast amounts of data, which need to be correlated and analyzed by specialists. The support of a 24/7/365 Security Operations Center (SOC) provides visibility to and analysis of threats within an environment and can help identify recommendations on how to maximize your security investments.” 

He continued, “While it’s imperative that organizations monitor their environments 24/7/365, most do not have the human or technical resources to sustain that pace. They turn to a third party to support their existing infrastructure. Herjavec Group is focused on managed security services, and we continue to identify areas where our enterprise customers can be more effective in their security posture. We pride ourselves on our flexible and agile offering, which includes on-premises, cloud or hybrid models because it really is about supporting the customer’s infrastructure and bolstering their security practice.” 

Robert is the founder and CEO of Herjavec Group, but he sounds like a chief technology officer. I guess he’s dealing with a lot more zeroes at the end of these companies’ revenue figures compared to what he sees on the TV show, so the change in tone is understandable. 

Herjavec Group is well positioned in the market. The Managed Security Services Provider market is continuing to grow as companies look to outsource cybersecurity. Frost & Sullivan researchers predict the EMEA MSSP market will reach $5 billion by 2018. 

Sounds like the Sysec acquisition was a very well thought out move by Robert. Herjavec Group announced a three-year $250 million expansion plan last year. After the recent move into Europe with the acquisition of Sysec, it feels like a global expansion is coming next. 

Hey Robert: What would you think of a new show: “Cyber Tank?” The MSSPs would come running. But if “Mr. Wonderful” reads this, he might beat you to the punch. 

Steve Morgan is founder and CEO at Cybersecurity Ventures and editor-in-chief of the Cybersecurity Market Report and the Cybersecurity 500 list of the world’s hottest and most innovative cybersecurity companies. Follow Steve on Twitter or connect with him on LinkedIn.





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