Irish-backed cyber-security VC seeks up to 20 start-ups


February 7, 2016

Dubliner Alex O’Cinneide is backing a new €320m fund established by billion-euro US private equity firm Paladin Capital that is currently running the rule over 20 Irish technology start-ups specialising in cyber security.

As MD of Paladin Europe, O’Cinneide has also been joined by Irishwoman Dr Mary Aiken, a professor of cyber analytics, who inspired the US TV programme CSI: Cyber, in which she was played by Patricia Arquette. Dr Aiken was previously director of the Royal College of Surgeons’ cyber psychology research centre here and is an advisor to the London-based fund, which is the largest global VC investor in cyber security.

O’Cinneide recently merged Gore Street Capital, the green-energy investment firm he founded – in which US hedge fund billionaire Paul Tudor-Jones was an investor – with Paladin Capital’s €1bn group of investment funds.

Gore Street will retain its name and specific focus on investing in wind and solar energy and energy storage, though it is unlikely to invest here.

Although he declined to say how much money he had made, O’Cinneide has invested some of it in the new cyber-security fund. This is likely to be at least a few million, in keeping with what partners would typically invest in a VC fund. Paladin Europe will make investments from seed stage to series A and B, from €500,000 to about €5m.

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