Ten resellers reveal which tech start-ups they are tipping to take off in 2018

Doug Woodburn
clock • 14 min read

From AI and software robots to new security techniques such as isolation, which hot tech start-ups could break through this year? We asked execs at 10 resellers, from cyber-security and cloud specialists to big players such as Daisy and Softcat, for their tips

Certes Networks

Founded 2000

Total funds raised: $23.8m (Crunchbase)

HQ: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Field: Layer 4 encryption

Cheerleader: Rob Swainson, Blue Cube

Founded in 2000 and boasting 800 customers, Certes is hardly a newbie, but the Pennsylvania-based encryption specialist has caught the eye of cybersecurity integrator Blue Cube following a UK launch last year.

Blue Cube sales director Rob Swainson singled out Certes as his tip for take-off in 2018, arguing that it could solve some of the past woes associated with encryption.

"People have tried to do network-layer encryption and it hasn't necessarily been effective, as it's a bit clunky when having to make changes on routers and switches and security infrastructure," he said. "Whereas with the Certes story, it enables you to encrypt the payload at layer 4 and eliminates that need to make complex changes to the network infrastructure. It's an interesting technology that we are having a bit of focus on."

Certes' largest round of funding to date - $14.26m - came back in 2010 and is smaller than others in this list, but Swainson said financial clout isn't the only consideration when taking on emerging vendors.

"There are vendors out there that appear to have started purely with the exit strategy of being acquired by one of the large vendors, which isn't ideal for an organisation like us if we are investing in a relationship," he said.

"They are building a UK team. As a business they've been around for a number of years, but the technology they've brought to market, and some of the future plans for the technology, are quite exciting."

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