For Immediate Release / October 18, 2023 / Fremont, CA
The IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator is an investment-readiness and technical mentorship program. IBM runs the global program in collaboration with Village Capital: a Washington, DC-based organization that supports impact-driven, seed-stage startups with technical, investment, and business service guidance. Participation unlocks access to capital, enables Confection’s mission, and directly benefits customers.
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"We're really inspired by the VilCap and IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator teams," says Quimby Melton, Confection's co-founder and CEO. "IBM's legacy of world-class computing, industrial research, and thought leadership shines through their work. But it's the VilCap/IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator mission that excites us most:
"Unlocking capital for early-stage companies tackling global-scale, data-sensitive problems."
"Capital is agency, intelligence, and power," Quimby continues. "Like healthy markets, good data solutions allocate capital as efficiently as possible. Martech's current capital regime is extremely inefficient. From the bottom up, narrow-minded privacy fanatics undermine digital marketing's 30-year-old technical architecture. From the top down, we see the chilling effects of well-intentioned – but confusing, contradictory, and technically unwieldy – privacy policies and government frameworks. At the top, we also see capital concentrations at large technology companies and in entrenched, 20-year-old martech products. Both hold disproportionate amounts of power over data flows and reporting. And both are also acutely sensitive to the negative effects of browser and device disruptions involving cookies, cross-domain scripts, and device IDs. These regulatory deterrents and routine technical failures create substantial headwinds for SMB growth here in the US and around the world."
"Confection has a simple mission," Quimby says. "We want to help marketers take control of their primary digital data sets, the critical information they use to make decisions and fuel business growth. In this way, Confection is a power transfer mechanism, a capital reallocation device. Specifically, we want to reallocate technical data capital where it can be used most efficiently and effectively. For us, that means putting it in the hands of ground-level marketers at SMBs around the world. With the right intel, these professionals can make decisions that drive business growth, improve a concentric circle of lives (teammates, stakeholders, families, customers), and, as a result, boost micro- and macro-economic health."
"To execute this ambitious goal," Quimby concludes, "we need well-aligned partners who believe in what we're doing. Like our existing partners at Echelon, Heroku, Vanta, and IPinfo, IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator, VilCap, and IBM's suite of cloud products offer an empowering blend of capital access, mission validation, and technical enablement."
Participating in the IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator will directly benefit Confection customers.
"Specifically," says Bruno Cantuária, Confection's Brazil-based co-founder and CTO, "we're going to use our generous IBM Cloud credits to neutralize an external dependency and further enhance our already battle-hardened security posture."
"Logging may not be the most exciting part of an application stack," Bruno adds, "but it's really important. And maximizing the amount of log data we have to work with gives our team quite a bit of power and optionality. By shifting to IBM Cloud Activity Tracker, we'll be able to store more total data and save thousands of dollars per year vs. our traditional logging solution."
"By shifting to IBM Messages, we'll see additional benefits," Bruno continues. "We'll save 50% per month on usage fees and enjoy important security gains. IBM Cloud allows us to run RabbitMQ on a private network which places an additional firewall – policed by the IBM network itself – between our application and threat actors. Using IBM Cloud's Hyper Protect Crypto Services, we'll also be able to encrypt our RabbitMQ data, which is another invaluable security gain."
Looking out to the future, the Confection team sees other exciting opportunities as well.
"Our most significant day-to-day security concern involves API data poisoning," Bruno says. "We have certain proven protocols in place that prevent this. However, we want to start playing offense as well as defense. We know inbound customer data should contain certain elements and match certain patterns to be valid. If an inbound data stream diverges from these expectations, it's very likely malicious."
"Now that we're running log data into IBM Cloud," Bruno continues, "we can start to do really interesting things with it. Specifically, we can begin using Watson to parse logs and detect pattern divergences in those logs. We can then use IBM Cloud Monitoring alerts when potential poisoning events occur and block associated IPs and user agents so they can't submit data to our application. We feel this is a remarkable security posture for a company at our stage and revenue level."
"In addition to participating in the IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator program," Bruno concludes, "we're excited about building the future of digital marketing within IBM Cloud's impressive technical ecosystem."
About the IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator
The IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator is an investment-readiness and technical mentorship program. Since 2019, the program has supported 146 startups from 36 countries. Village Capital and IBM have worked closely with diversity-support organizations and our Program Advisors to source and select strong companies with diverse founders. These efforts resulted in 45% of our startups having at least one female founder, and 59% having at least one Black, Asian, or LatinX founder across all the 146 alumni companies. Email [email protected] for more information about the program.
About Village Capital
Village Capital is the largest organization in the world supporting impact-driven, seed-stage startups. Since 2009, Village Capital team has directly worked with more than 1,100 entrepreneurs in 28 countries and has invested in 110 startups that have gone on to raise more than $4 billion in follow-on capital.
Technical disruptions make it difficult for marketers to generate and leverage high-quality digital data. Confection helps customers collect, store, and distribute digital marketing data in a way that’s both compliant and unaffected by disruptions involving cookies, cross-domain scripts, and device IDs. The company serves marketing professionals and application developers at SMBs around the world. For more information, and to see Confection in action, please visit confection.io
After reviewing 250 applications, the IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator has selected Confection – a software solution that helps marketers take control of primary digital data sets – and 44 other companies to join its 2023 program. IBM runs the global program in collaboration with Village Capital: a Washington, DC-based organization that supports impact-driven, seed-stage startups with technical, investment, and business service guidance.
IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator startups use highly-sensitive data to improve the quality of, and access to, a wide variety of different services in verticals such as marketing, education, healthcare, finance, and insurance. Participants benefit from a year of technical mentorship, access to IBM’s partner network, and go-to-market support. Past IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator cohort companies include data technology companies Merkle Science ($25.6MM raised) and Pngme ($18.3MM raised). Find the full list of 150+ IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator startups here.
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