Belgium-based RESPONSUM, a spin-off of privacy, security, and data management specialist CRANIUM, announced that it will be granted capital that can extend up to €2.5M from investment company Volta Ventures. The capital injection starts at €1M, but can be raised to €2.5M in the near future.
With this investment, Koen De Waele of Volta Ventures and business angel Catalina Daniëls will take a seat on the board of directors of RESPONSUM. Alex Van Cauwenbergh, CEO of CRANIUM until recently, will become the new CEO of RESPONSUM in November.
Speaking on the development, Koen De Waele says, “Companies have a clear need for user-friendly tools to manage privacy and security in an integrated manner in order to anticipate risks. RESPONSUM has been able to provide them with a solution in a relatively short time frame. The combination of the platform and the team’s deep domain knowledge is now linked to SaaS experience to accelerate the scale-up of RESPONSUM in Belgium and internationally.”
Funds to develop the platform
The proceeds from this round will help RESPONSUM scale up its SaaS solution to give companies full control over privacy and security risks, and to help RESPONSUM establish a firm foothold abroad. To achieve this, the company is also in the process of expanding its workforce by hiring a sales and marketing team and a customer support expert.
Van Cauwenbergh explains, “There is clearly a substantial demand on the market for RESPONSUM. Customer feedback has proven the maturity and stability of the platform, and our list of prospects is also growing rapidly. The time is therefore ripe to put all our efforts into further expansion. Thanks to this investment round, we will be able to scale up and gain a firm foothold beyond our national borders.”
The funds will also be used to accelerate the development of the company’s SaaS tool. Modules such as GDPR management, awareness, and e-learning courses are already included in the tool but will be expanded on a continuous basis.
RESPONSUM’s co-founder Bavo Van den Heuvel is responsible for providing the expertise behind the tool’s further development. As the company’s Chief Knowledge Officer, he says, “It is important to listen to your customers and keep an eye on any new standards on the market.”
Van den Heuvel further adds, “A ‘Multiple Regulations’ module will be added by the end of the year so that companies from other countries, such as the USA, will also be able to use RESPONSUM. We constantly keep abreast of all new trends in the field of privacy and security and make sure the platform can respond to them.”
How was RESPONSUM born?
CRANIUM, founded in Belgium in 2016, is a GDPR consultancy firm in the Benelux with over 100 international DPO missions and specialising in privacy, security, and data management. The company provides end-to-end solutions to small, medium, and large enterprises to support them in maintaining business continuity and generating business value.
But the firm saw that much time was spent on administrative work, the decrease of which would enable it to do more consultancy work.
Thus, the idea for RESPONSUM was born – a software platform that empowers organisations to create robust privacy & security programs and build up trust to their customers, employees, and stakeholders.
The Zaventem-based startup provides companies with a tool (also called RESPONSUM) that gives them full control over privacy and security risks. The tool enables its users to perform self-scans or set up awareness campaigns on their own initiative. It allows organisations to manage and demonstrate compliance with privacy regulations such as the GDPR and cybersecurity at all times. Over seventy companies are already using the platform.
In the past, the company has received investments by the founders, a grant of €486,000 from Flanders Innovation & Entrepreneurship (Vlaio) and a loan of €350,000 from the Flemish private equity firm PMV.