It is no longer news that businesses and organisations are beginning to establish their presence in cyberspace as the world continues to succumb to digitalization and globalization. One humongous downside to this, though, is that cyberattacks and threats are becoming more frequent, the cybercriminals becoming more sophisticated, and the effects of their nefarious trade becoming more devastating.
According to a Kaspersky report, cyberattacks targeting SMEs increased by 89 per cent in 2022. The figure was even worse for Nigeria as these attacks rose by 174 per cent in the first six months of 2022, according to a BusinessDay report. According to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), these attacks resulted in a loss of more than $500 million to Nigerian SMEs. Across Africa in general, the figure is about $4 billion. This is even as experts predict that cyberattacks will rise at least 15 per cent every year over the next five years.
As the CEO of Ravebeta, a cybersecurity startup, Igwe Prince Ikechukwu puts it, gone are the days when we expect thieves to come to our houses or raid our business places. Now it can happen from you being in the house or business place and the cybercriminals can get the information they need and use it against you, to steal large sums of money and vital information from your own phone and other devices.
Ravebeta is a cybersecurity and information communication technology startup focused on helping businesses and organisations diligently safeguard their digital assets against threats, ensuring the integrity and confidentiality of their information, and guaranteeing the privacy of both companies and the individuals who work there.
The company also plays in the realm of software development by crafting innovative and tailored solutions to meet the diverse needs of these businesses and pushing the boundaries of what they can achieve with technology.
Ravebeta was founded in 2018 by Igwe Prince Ikechukwu. However, it was duly established and incorporated in 2019 by the CAC. Speaking about the motivation behind founding the startup, the CEO explained that growing into adulthood, he had the unenviable pleasure of being introduced into cyberspace and how it works very early in life. He was, therefore, all too aware of the cyber attacks happening there, especially those targeted at business owners.
This awareness had driven him to start cybersecurity sensitization at Abia State University, where he was the President of Computer Science Students. Through the program tagged the Abia Cybersecurity Summit, he invited keynote speakers from the EFCC and DSS and people who have general experience of how cyber attacks happen in cyberspace to help educate fellow students.
The awareness also drove him to study cybersecurity at the Glasgow Caledonian University in the UK. But it wasn’t until he witnessed a devastating cyberattack targeted at a family friend’s business did he finally decide to actively be the solution.
“What prompted me to start the company, more specifically, was when a family member’s company was compromised and they lost over 150,000 dollars (naira) from cyber attacks. This prompted me to come up with a solution to firstly sensitise the society, especially staff of SME’s, as well as to bring in the cyber defence skills in place for these businesses and organisations to adequately protect themselves and avoid the situation that family friend had found himself in,” he said.
Other key members of the team include Noble Monday, who is the Chief Technology Officer (CTO). Noble is in charge of overseeing the technical development of the company’s solutions. Azorom Ebube Immaculate serves as the Chief Operations Officer (COO) and she oversees and manages the marketing and operational aspects of the business.
Thousands of users at 95% satisfaction rate
Although Ravebeta is still in its infancy with its founder still bootstrapping its operations with some help from angel investors, the startup has nonetheless been able to do well for itself. The cybersecurity outfit has been able to attract a significant number of businesses and organisations to its fold and according to the CEO, this represents impressive growth.
The company hopes to adequately deliver on its promise of safeguarding these organisations through its patented product, the Ravebeta Plus when it finally launches. While the company is currently providing cybersecurity solutions with other products readily available, they are nonetheless enthusiastic about the Ravebeta Plus as they believe it would mark a watershed and redefine how businesses and organisations can be duly protected by solutions specifically tailored to them.
“At the moment we are currently servicing a lot of businesses. This represents significant growth especially since we have not yet launched our own product and still working with solutions we find in the market. The majority of our customers are real estate companies, fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG), telecoms, and some government agencies and parastatals, as well as the oil and gas sector in Nigeria. We have also recorded successful collaborations with prominent Nigerian companies to achieve a 95 per cent user satisfaction rate,” he said.
The company isn’t looking to raise VC funding until it has completed its patented flagship product, the Ravebeta Plus. And such funding would be targeted at helping small-scale businesses to build and grow as they believe that if these businesses do not have their assets and information well safeguarded, they would find it difficult to break into that realm of big businesses and multinationals that they desire to.
Localising the cybersecurity experience
While Ravebeta is a company with a global outlook, its uniqueness, however, lies in its ability to localize the cybersecurity experience in whichever market it enters. With this drive, the startup is able to target big as well as smaller businesses in a bid to help them grow.
“We are looking at mainly solving unique cyber challenges that are local and very specific to the local markets. So while we are servicing major companies and brands, we are also targeting the smaller businesses and our aim is to help them grow into big organisations playing their part on the international business stage. We understand the unique challenges each industry faces and are dedicated to crafting solutions that not only meet but exceed expectations,” Igwe said.
The company is also unique in its approach of trying to understand the cybersecurity risks that are peculiar to local businesses. It is also investing in reaching out to them to create this awareness in the first place rather than rushing into the market with a solution which might end up not being suitable to specific needs.
The company’s expansion plans are rooted in this approach which is why it is not in a hurry to embark on physical expansion of its offices or services. Rather, the focus is on expanding the pool of current and future business owners whom their awareness and sensitization projects would target.
“We are expanding our awareness pool so that every business will understand the importance of safeguarding their assets and digital information and also safeguarding their digital and cyberspace to prevent loss of funds, loss of identity, loss of valuable information and data. We want to sensitise the general public on the importance of safeguarding the cyberspace and preventing cyber-attacks which could happen to anybody,” he said.
Apart from businesses, the company is also investing in sensitizing the public. Thus, it is organising outreaches to schools, town halls, universities and the general public. This is how it intends to water the ground and make the market ready for cybersecurity solutions. The company believes that this will have a more far-reaching impact than rushing to expand and sell cybersecurity products to a market segment that may not be really ready for it.
Ravebeta is a cybersecurity company that is introducing a new approach to tackling cyber threats. They also pride themselves on empowering individuals and organizations through their digital skill enhancement training. With a focus on fostering a tech-savvy community, they focus on equipping their clients with the knowledge and capabilities needed to thrive in the digital era.
Led by Igwe Prince Ikechukwu, a seasoned expert and certified ethical hacker who boasts a holistic approach to problem-solving coupled with a robust educational background and professional certifications to boot, the company is flourishing into a dynamic force in cyber security, software development, and digital skill enhancement.
“At Ravebeta LTD, we blend technical excellence with a passion for continuous learning, driving the success of our clients and contributing to the advancement of the tech industry. Join us on this exciting journey as we navigate the digital landscape together,” he finished.
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