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Penten, a local cyber security company has been successful receiving funding under contract with AustCyber, the Australian Cyber Security Growth Network to provide secure network access to a pilot group of regional SMEs and academia.

This project represents turning point for Defence industry. The opportunity will provide Aussie SMEs with means to bid for, win and work on Government classified projects in a secure and protected environment from any location. Regional Australia will no longer be excluded from working on Defence projects and Australia’s sovereign defence capabilities will have a chance to thrive.

For some regional SMEs and the research community, working with Defence has proved difficult. The cost to set up and operate secure IT systems is expensive and complex. This complexity has restricted SMEs from entering the industry, whereas larger companies with the ability to set up and maintain secure communications have had an advantage.

Penten’s secure mobility service is a low-cost alternative, providing regional Australia the chance to join the Defence industry without the high up-front and ongoing maintenance costs. It also gives Defence industry the opportunity to engage a wider range of Australian companies to deliver sovereign capability.

Based on Penten’s AltoCrypt® technology, the project will deliver customers a familiar desktop experience through a secure device to a protected environment. Users will enjoy flexibility without the need for briefcases, power packs and cables. The SME will only need to provide an internet connection.

The secure mobility service provides the SME the ability to meet the requirements to access Australian government work with the opportunity to expand to the global defence market. After the pilot, it is planned to roll out the service to a wide net of Defence Industry partners.

Matthew Wilson, CEO, Penten reiterated the benefits to Australia are twofold. “SMEs are the future growth and innovation engine of the Australian cyber economy. These businesses provide invaluable opportunities for Defence to gain advantage. Without them, we are missing out. Australia is missing out.

“Our secure mobility service will provide these SMEs and academics the opportunity to be seen, heard, and have their ideas, products and skills recognised on a national and international level. The Australian economy will benefit as will the SMEs themselves. This is a turning point for regional Australia, small business and Defence. No one need be excluded any more”.

Michelle Price, CEO, AustCyber said, “This project will bring together Australian SMEs to better support and protect themselves, Defence and national security information; as well as Australia’s emerging place in the global defence and cyber market. AustCyber sees this project as a true game changer for the Australian economy and it shows a better way for economies globally.”

In addition to work opportunities, this secure mobility service raises the cyber protection of those businesses and researchers that face the highest threat. Often, SMEs are targeted by cyber adversaries as they are not equipped to protect themselves. The cost of not making the investment results in their exclusion from directly supporting the Defence sector. This project will enable these communities with trusted and proven cyber protection.

For academia specifically, the project will foster the acceleration of sensitive research and development enabling participation in the lucrative and forward leaning, global defence markets.

Sarah Bailey, has accepted a position on Penten’s board of directors. This significant step, marks the rapid growth of the company.

Since Penten’s inception in 2014, the company has doubled in staff and revenue every year, with 2020 projected to yield similar results. Sarah Bailey’s newest role as a company director, demonstrates the maturing of the company from a start-up to medium sized business in less than five years.

Matthew Wilson, CEO, Penten said, “Never before have we appointed someone who is not originally one of the founders of the company to the Board. We know that good business strategy comes from diverse thinking.

“Sarah brings her experienced and varied outlook to our board. She has proven to be an extremely effective CFO and she has played a pivotal role in Penten’s recent success. Only good things can come from this appointment.”

Bailey is an accomplished finance and business executive with more than 20 years’ experience in finance, strategy and governance. With qualifications in commerce, psychology and business leadership, she has exemplary skills across a broad, cross-section of areas.

Bailey has championed innovative people initiatives at Penten, including policies such as 26 weeks paid paternal leave, unlimited sick and carer’s leave, unlimited reservist leave and a 50/50 gender target.

Sarah Bailey, CFO, Penten said, “Diversity comes in many forms and one of the things we need to grapple with in the competitive cyber industry is attracting the best and brightest. We know we need to think as creatively as we can to attract the best. Penten is creating a workforce where especially women feel as though they can excel.”

Penten has been recognised on the National Australia Bank’s Innovation Index 2019 as exhibiting some of the best innovation behaviours in Australia. The innovation index measures how businesses did things differently, more quickly or more cost effectively.

Sarah Bailey, CFO, Penten said, “Innovation is in our heartbeat, not something we do on the side. We find customer problems that are unsolved and we do cutting edge work to solve them.”

Penten focuses on innovation by investing heavily in research and development and placing strategic importance on its people.

“At the heart of Penten is its people and a culture of deep internal trust, a family-like atmosphere and a strong united mission. By prioritising people, it not only creates an atmosphere of innovation, but drives customer satisfaction and business performance.” Bailey said.

Penten was recently recognised as Most Innovative Company in the AFR and Boss Awards and also received an award for Best Innovation Platform.

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CSIRO D61+ Live

The Cyber Security Cooperative Research Centre (CSCRC), has today announced a major research project between homegrown cyber security company Penten and CSIRO’s Data61, the data and digital specialist arm of Australia’s national science agency, to extend the country’s sovereign advantage in autonomous and active defence.

At the inaugural Australian Defence Industry Awards last night, Penten was awarded Cyber Business of the Year. In addition to winning the overall cyber category, three Penten staff made the finalist list: Matthew Wilson, Executive of the Year; Ben Whitham, Innovator of the Year and Cameron Humphries, Engineer of the Year.

Matthew Wilson, CEO of Penten, was awarded EY Entrepreneur of the Year, in the Emerging Male category at an exclusive awards ceremony in Sydney on 13 August 2019.

EY Entrepreneur of The Year is a unique global program that recognises entrepreneurial achievement among individuals that demonstrate vision, leadership and success — and work to improve the quality of life in their communities, countries and around the world.

Last night in Sydney, Penten was named Australia and New Zealand’s Most Innovative Company for 2019 and also took out Best Innovation Program, 2019 in the Government category at the prestigious Australian Financial Review and Boss Magazine Awards.

Penten ranked first for both awards from over 800 organisations across Australia and New Zealand. This award is based on rigorous assessment processes managed by Australian consultancy Inventium in conjunction with a panel of industry experts judges.