Former BT CEO Peter Bonfield joins funding round for Silent Circle

US and UK-based Silent Circle has raised $30 million of fresh institutional capital to grow out its mobile device privacy offering.

Having been co-founded by a former Navy Seal, Silent Circle has secured the funds it needs to grow globally by securing $30 million

The private communications business provides services related to mobile device security through a device-to-device platform.

Private investor fund Cain Capital has led the deal alongside Ross Perot, the chairman of Perot Systems and lead of new start-up investment fund Perot Jain.

The $30 million of funds secured will be used to meet demand for the Blackphone device, which allows users to have control of privacy. It will also be put to work securing a greater market share of the secure communications sector.

Developed by SGP Technologies, a Swiss-based joint venture between Silent Circle and Spanish mobile phone developer Geeksphone, Blackphone devices will begin shipping to customers in June.

Mike Janke, former Navy Seal and co-founder of Silent Circle, says, ‘Awareness of global privacy threats is irrevocably affecting individuals’ and businesses’ behaviour and driving worldwide damned for Silent Circle’s unmatched secure communication technology, calling plans and Blackphone devices.

Perot is joining the company board alongside Peter Bonfield, who served as CEO of BT for six years until November 2011. Also appointed to a similar role is former senior Dell executive Anurag Jain, who will is it as vice chairman.

As part of the deal announcement, Silent Circle is also moving its headquarters from the Caribbean to Switzerland. The business also has bases in DC, London and Canada, where it has data centres.

Explaining the move to Switzerland, Silent Circle chief of revenue Vic Hyder says, ‘Switzerland’s strong privacy laws, legendary neutrality, and economic business advantages will allow us the ability to scale to Silent Circle’s rapid adoption by businesses, governments and individual pro-sumers around the world.’

Also part of Silent Circle’s founding team is Phil Zimmerman, described as the creator of internet encryption for voice and data, and Jon Callas, who devised Apple’s whole disk encryption.

Jain, an entrepreneur and investor, adds, ‘Having followed Silent Circle’s growth and profile in the industry, we are excited about backing the company’s future and fulfilling the wider demand for accessible, easy-to-use privacy apps that are already an indispensable means of communication.

‘This is particularly true in fast-growing markets outside of the US where demand for private communications solutions is fuelled by strong privacy cultures, intrusive surveillance and censorship.’

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.

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