Going global

How to leverage the cyber growth opportunity in North America

As the UK cybersecurity sector continues to grow, an important factor in its future success is access to overseas markets. With UK cyber companies earning estimated revenues of £8.3bn last year, market opportunities in the US and Canada are increasingly sought by UK businesses to diversify their client base. North America is the largest single cybersecurity market, worth an estimated 36.7% of $156.5 billion globally. It’s therefore not surprising that the US is an appealing place to do business and a logical next step for some businesses.

UK businesses have inherent credibility when it comes to working alongside regulation and dealing with privacy legislation. This makes the healthcare and financial services sectors in the US both familiar and a natural fit. British companies also find success working with both the Federal and State governments, and benefit from the close intelligence relationship.

LORCA works closely with the Department for International Trade (DIT) to facilitate access to overseas market support for its cohorts and the UK ecosystem. Together, we have connected startup businesses with government stakeholders and a range of buyers across the US, assisted with access to funding and introduced some of the organisations that can help with landing and expanding their businesses. The DIT has also had success working with cyber companies in Canada, as their procurement processes evolve to support international acquisition.

In the last few years, the DIT has seen an increase in the success of UK cybersecurity companies in North America. We’ve built a strong UK programme of events around the RSA Conference and Billington CyberSecurity Summit, which has promoted UK innovation on a global stage, in addition to providing more tailored trade missions for specific sectors. Attendees have always been impressed by the quality of UK companies in attendance. This helps to build trust in the UK’s ability to foster world-leading solutions to complex cybersecurity problems.

UK cybersecurity companies coming to the US and Canada will find substantial opportunities to access funding, collaborate and acquire customers. But it’s important to put in the prerequisite research and consider where the sector clusters are.

It’s also important to understand how accreditation varies globally and what reference clients you have in the UK. Companies will want to understand who you’re working with and obtain references, so lining these up in advance can be hugely beneficial. A company may also want to know how you’re funded and by who. Having the right VC backing you can make a difference.

As we continue to be impacted by the pandemic in 2020, it’s clear that the situation has forced companies around the world to undergo digital transformation in record time. This has meant that the cybersecurity industry has been less impacted than other sectors.

Now is a great time to put the groundwork in place for future engagement. With teams working from home, UK-based companies have the opportunity to collaborate with global clients using the same enabling technologies as US companies. In-person sessions are being held online and while the traditional trade missions are on hold, companies are more receptive to conversations about how to protect themselves.

DIT locations – USA

British Embassy in Washington, and British Consulates General in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and San Francisco.

DIT locations – Canada

High Commission in Ottawa, and offices across Canada in Calgary, Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver.