What's your name?
What position do you hold?
CEO of Sytorus
What are your day to day responsibilities?
Apart from the regular board responsibilities, my main focus is on the strategic direction of the company as we continue to grow. I am heavily involved in product development and making sure PrivacyEngine, our core product, aligns with the rapidly changing landscape of the personal data management market.
What is your professional background?
I had an academic career before moving into industry, I completed a PhD in Computer Science from Maynooth University, while lecturing I got the entrepreneur bug and I spun out a company based on my PhD. I moved into consulting and became head of consulting for an Irish tech firm. Myself, Mike Morrisey and Hugh Jones set up Sytorus in 2013 and have been growing it since then.
You are speaking at the 2019 Growth Capital Summit. What are you speaking about?
I am speaking about how to raise funding in Ireland and the benefits of doing it. I will be sharing my experience of raising funds in Ireland and growing a company here.
What have been your highlights in business over the past year?
We have changed and matured a lot as a company this year, at our stage of development and growth every year is transformative. We have offices across Europe and are continuously honing our business processes which are critical to our long-term scalability and profitability. The key highlight for me this year so far is how much we have improved our product PrivacyEngine, we have worked extremely hard to not only keep pace with market demands but go beyond them to develop what privacy programmes of tomorrow will need. This is a rapidly growing sector with massive upside, and we want to be one of the big winners. I am confident that the work we are doing this year will give us a great chance of achieving our goals in the medium to long term.
What’s next for your company?
We are a very ambitious company and we want to continue to grow. We have hundreds of companies across the world using PrivacyEngine and we continuing to grow month on month. We are always looking for ways to accelerate growth by deploying different rapidly scalable strategies. This generally requires all areas of the business from our consultants to design specialists to work together. We have a fantastic multi-disciplinary team which is one of our unique strengths, we look to leverage this strength as much as possible to help us achieve our goals.
What new trends are emerging in your industry?
The personal data management market has changed beyond all recognition over the past 5 years. We have moved from a position where companies didn’t know what data protection was to one where there is strong and growing data protection capability and competency across different sectors and industries. We work with many of them. These individuals know exactly what they want from PrivacyEngine and are constantly providing feedback to help us iterate and validate our enhancements, which is great.
The more companies use personal data the more of a need there is for companies like ours to ensure that individuals personal data does not get misused. The macro trends for Sytorus in this regard, look extremely positive.
What are the challenges facing your industry going forward?
While the data protection market is growing rapidly, it is still very early stage. There is a lot of uncertainty in the market, it is yet to be fully seen what sort of fines will be handed down to companies who misuse personal data in Europe. We are keeping a close eye on the US market as it is largely expected that a federal data protection act will be implemented, the question is when. Really, this is very much a global market, so while there are many unknowns, our job is to best position ourselves to take advantage of the growing market as it continues to evolve and mature.
John Ghent will be speaking at the 2019 Growth Capital Summit on May 30th at the Clayton Hotel Burlington Road. You can book your place at capitalsummit.ie.