Catalyst Technologies secures $1.8 million to bring enterprise-grade crisis management to the masses
SYDNEY – September marks the sixth full month of lockdowns, travel restrictions and remote work. It also marks the official start of bushfire season in Australia and is prime time for hurricanes over in the Atlantic.
But amidst the chaos of 2020, one Sydney-based startup is providing some much-needed composure to businesses.
Catalyst Technologies is helping businesses rethink the way they identify, contextualise and respond to critical events, from natural disasters to supply chain disruptions as well as global pandemics like COVID-19.
Its suite of cloud-based tools aims to monitor and analyse third-party information such as weather warnings, social media sentiment, cybersecurity breaches and physical security incidents to enable businesses to accelerate their awareness of critical events, understand the impacts, seamlessly communicate with stakeholders and streamline their response.
With more than 100 customers, including blue-chip companies such as GPT Group, Vicinity Centres, Cbus Super, as well as the University of Sydney, Catalyst Technologies has now raised $1.8 million in seed funding to expand its global reach.
Founder and CEO Joshua Shields officially launched the start-up in October 2019, after the successful sale of RiskLogic, the crisis and business continuity consultancy that he co-founded in 2005.
Shields says “We’ve witnessed serious swings in organisations’ shareholder values during a crisis, based on two things; the quality of crisis intelligence available and the subsequent decisions being made by leadership teams. By leveraging human-centric technology, we saw a significant opportunity to improve collaboration and performance across an organisation to make a positive impact during a crisis.”
“Every year, threats and disruptions are increasing in severity and frequency. It’s become glaringly obvious that traditional approaches to crisis management are not keeping up with today’s environment and are subsequently adding to the complexity of the process. Organisations’ responses to critical events are fragmented, siloed, and slow.”
“We’ve developed a suite of cloud-based tools that enable any business to make faster and smarter decisions when it matters most. By helping to increase engagement across an organisation, we not only improve our chances of reducing risk but also help to identify opportunities that provide a competitive advantage.”
Lauren Allen, Group Manager, Health & Safety at GPT Group has experienced first-hand the benefits of technology in a crisis; “We’ve used Catalyst Technologies’ platform at all levels of GPT to get ahead of situations from severe weather events in the Northern Territory to navigating the various impacts of COVID19. The platform enables our dispersed teams to assess, communicate and respond rapidly.”
The funding round was led by early-stage investment group Investible, with participation by Jelix Ventures and Eleanor Venture.
“Joshua’s proven ability in founding, scaling, and exiting a company in the crises management space has resulted in significant early traction for the business and given investors’ confidence that he is capable of disrupting this traditional industry,” said Daniel Veytsblit, Investment Director at Investible.
“COVID-19 has led many businesses to realise just how unprepared they are to manage risk, especially event-specific risk. Given its digital platform can be easily implemented into existing systems, we see great potential for Catalyst Tech to make an impact globally,” he added.
Shields says the funding will be used to support further product development and to expand Catalyst Technologies’ footprint in local and global markets.
“The future is exciting – not only are we disrupting a traditionally conservative industry, but we are building out innovative new technology, leveraging AI and Machine learning, to provide further automation, predictive modelling and tailored insights for better decision making.”