Driving the modern transition towards a password- and OTP-less future, SaaS-based one-tap authentication service, SAWO Labs, has successfully closed its seed funding round. SAWO Labs was one of the nine pre-seed stage startups that 100x.VC invested in September 2020 as a part of its Class 02 Portfolio. The Rs. 5.5-crore seed funding round was led by StartupXseed, thereby increasing the startup’s valuation to Rs. 28 crores within 60 days of its incorporation.
SAWO, an abbreviation for Secure Authentication Without OTP, is a paradigm-changing authentication service that introduces high-end security protocols in the touch-of-a-button format. The platform leverages SSL (Secured Sockets Layer) of Mongo DB as well as FIDO protocol to simplify user verification across web, cloud, on-premises applications, VPNs, and remote access gateways. The platform maintains a high level of security with easy-to-integrate service that has been compressed in a six-line code. It further brings down the cost of authentication to a quarter of what businesses incur at present.
Authentication being a common function across multiple business verticals, SAWO aims to be an expert plugin partner by replacing the need for an in-house team. The company has successfully roped in big corporates within 100 days of the product launch primarily because of security, ease of use, and cost advantage. Speaking about the market size, it is estimated that the global OTP market is worth 2 Billion USD at present and is on track to reach 3.25 Billion USD by 2024.
The startup aims to utilize the funds in further strengthening its product portfolio and developing next-gen OTP-less and password-less tools based out of India (including Robo identification and password-less consumer onboarding tools). To this end, it will actively drive team building initiatives and accelerate its marketing outreach. SAWO also aims to augment its cloud infrastructure to bring down its customer servicing cloud cost.
Speaking on the funding round, Prabhat Sahu, Founder and CEO, SAWO Labs said, “At SAWO, we are singularly focused on revolutionizing the global authentication landscape. We aim to make ultramodern security protocols an integral part of contemporary digital experiences, saving millions of man-hours of the end-users. The confidence that StartupXseed and 100x.VC have displayed in our approach is a testament to the fact that we are on the right path. SAWO is grateful to everyone whose efforts have led to a successful closure of our seed funding round. I would also like to extend a special thanks to our strategic advisory firm Vasan&Sampath for its remarkable contributions throughout.”
While talking about the investment, Mr. BV Naidu, Managing Partner, StartupXseed Ventures commented that “StartupXseed is keen to partner early with entrepreneurs with strong vision, empathy & learnability index and SAWO was no exception. We also feel that SAWO has the potential to be a global solution provider.”
Mr. Ravi Thakur, Co-founding Partner, StartupXseed Ventures added that “This is the first investment of our second fund and we are excited to have invested in a great team like SAWO. It’s been a great learning for us to find startups during the pandemic time and we are overwhelmed to have found SAWO.”
Ninad Karpe, Partner at 100x.VC which was SAWO’s initial investor also noted that “As the first institutional investor in SAWO, we are excited to see the momentum it has received in funding which will fuel its growth trajectory. SAWO has a unique solution to a problem which is faced by consumers across the world. With the funding received by SAWO, it can now scale rapidly in its journey to become a global leader. At 100x.vc, we invested in the vision of SAWO and are delighted to see its progress.”
“SAWO is solving a real pain point for its customers by eliminating passwords & OTPs and hence, has attracted significant investor interest. We are excited about the journey ahead after being backed by StartupXseed, one of the finest B2B investors along with existing marquee early-stage investors like 100X.VC” adds Hareesh Sharma, partner at Vasan&Sampath LLP, which acted as an exclusive advisor to SAWO for the transaction.