Skyflow adds generative AI support to its data privacy tools
Skyflow, a data-privacy startup, announced on Friday that it has expanded the number of markets in which it offers data residency support for businesses that need to keep certain information within defined boundaries. In today’s market, you probably can’t keep customer data from the EU, say South America and vice versa, so companies need to be careful to keep some information at home in the market it originated from.
Skyflow started life as a tool to help businesses store personally identifiable information, or PII, in a secure way. Its API helps companies “manage all of the difficult privacy, encryption and data issues associated with storing PII and other forms of potentially radioactive data for its customers,” we wrote the last time we covered. ‘business.
The startup, which recently closed a $45 million Series B in late 2021, can now support data residency requirements in Japan, India, Indonesia and Bahrain. Labor, Skyflow CEO Anshu Sharma explained to TechCrunch+, will allow software companies to offer their services in more markets, faster, while complying with local regulatory requirements regarding the location of data and the secure storage of users’ personal information.
Sharma argued that his company’s newly expanded regional data storage capabilities will provide ways to help other companies avoid the complexity of spinning up their own data storage and security frameworks just to get started on new ones. new markets.
Skyflow’s work to support more regions didn’t come cheap. Sharma said the work had a “high fixed cost”, which Skyflow could afford as it “raised a lot of money”, allowing it to “pay infrastructure and operating costs” for its customers. . (By the way, that’s what venture capital is for: building before revenue in hopes of garnering outsized market share.)
Given that every tech company – startup and major – wants to rack up every bit of growth possible in the currently slow market, you can see why Skyflow is expecting a return on its spending. If software companies continue to push to reach new markets to sell their services, they will have to manage an array of data regulations and rules themselves. Or they can work with Skyflow or one of its competitors – EverVault, Protegrity, among others – to help meet local requirements.
So far, Skyflow has found notable international adoption. Sharma told TechCrunch+ that his company does more than 40% of its current business with non-US customers. The CEO was quick to point out—retrieving S-1 documents on our call—that some well-known software companies sported a low double-digit share of their revenue from international markets when they went public. It will be curious to see if greater regional support pushes this figure above 50% over time; we will be back with the startup in a few quarters.
Where does generative AI come from?
Skyflow initially focused on offering its services to the fintech and healthcare verticals. However, it recently created a version of its data storage service to support generative AI services. So when we had Sharma on the phone to talk about data residency, we also asked a few questions about market demand for LLM-related software services.
First, we wanted to know if the startup built the tool out of known demand or ahead of an anticipated need. Per Sharma, his startup started getting calls from customers a few months ago about generative AI and how these companies need to keep not only PII, but sensitive data in-house, too. deviation from LLMs. He said the demand came from both the bottom-up use of generative AI tools and curiosity from leaders. In other words, corporate drones and corporate demigods want to use generative AI, but they don’t want to have problems with the kind of data leaks we’ve already seen in the market.