James Foster on Taking ZeroFox Public in Hard Economic TimesZeroFox Is the First Security Company to Go Public in 2022 After 5 Deals Last Year
James Foster has been swimming against the current for months, taking ZeroFox public by merging with a special-purpose acquisition company despite the worsening economic conditions.
The move means the Baltimore-based external threat intelligence and protection vendor is the first cybersecurity company to go public in all of 2022. That's a far cry from last year, when KnowBe4, SentinelOne and ForgeRock all completed IPOs, and Appgate and IronNet merged with SPACs (see: Move From a Reactive to a Proactive State With Intelligence).
ZeroFox began trading on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange Thursday under the ticker symbol "ZFOX" after completing its merger with publicly traded SPAC L&F Acquisition Corp. As part of the transaction, ZeroFox also acquired data breach response services provider IDX. The company's stock is up 27.7% in its first two days of trading to $13.60 per share, pushing ZeroFox's valuation up to $1.62 billion.
"Short-term macro dynamics were never going to stop this deal and never going to stop our trajectory and growth," Foster says. "We have long-term believers that understand how important of a problem we're working on. We've been able to navigate something that most haven't. We look at difficult times as opportunities, and we're certainly seizing this one."
In this video interview with Information Security Media Group, Foster also discusses:
- Why going public will benefit ZeroFox customers;
- The key integration milestones for ZeroFox and IDX;
- The importance of protecting assets and not just devices.
Foster is an industry veteran and a world-renowned thought leader on cybersecurity. He has published over a dozen books, holds patents, has spoken on Capitol Hill about the increase in international cyberthreats and is a recognized keynote speaker. In 2006, Foster founded the cybersecurity firm Ciphent, which grew to almost 100 employees and 1,000 customers by 2010, when it was acquired by Accuvant. As chairman of the advisory board and senior vice president at Accuvant, Foster led the successful acquisition of V3rity while the company achieved 50% year-over-year growth in 2011 with revenues in excess of $325 million.