News of Mr Farquhar and Mr Cannon-Brookes’ involvement in the funding was contained in a November 14 media release but has not yet been reported by Australian media.
“Atlassian founders & co-CEOs Scott Farquhar and Mike Cannon-Brookes, Atlassian president Jay Simons … and several notable angel investors also joined the round,” the release said.
Exactly how much of the $294 million Mr Farquhar and Mr Cannon-Brookes each invested is unknown.
Use of the app means that people don’t have to remember all of their passwords – just one master password, which gives them access to their vault of log-in credentials. Complex passwords can also be generated by the app, negating the need to come up with a new password for each service a person uses (which is recommended by computer security experts).
1Password competes with LastPass and Dashlane, among others. People use these services to prevent their online accounts from being hacked.
Mr Cannon-Brookes and Mr Farquhar did not respond to requests for comment from The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. “They aren’t providing comment on this one,” an Atlassian spokesperson said.
A likely reason as to why they might not feel the need to tout this fundraising is the fact that, as revealed by Canadian newspaper The Globe & Mail, the structure of the round raised eyebrows because it allowed 1Password’s founders to cash out some of their existing shares before an Initial Public Offering, or IPO, where a company is listed on the sharemarket, allowing for a liquidity event.
Canada’s The Globe & Mail reported, citing industry sources, that 1Password’s revenue was in the high “tens of millions” of US dollars and that the latest financing valued it well north of $US500 million.
The newspaper said at least one third of the funds raised would be fresh capital for the company, with the remaining shares sold down by founders.
“We don’t come across companies like 1Password very often, especially in an era of growth at
all costs,” said Accel partner Arun Mathew in 1Password’s media release.
“Like Atlassian and Qualtrics, the 1Password team impressed us by building a business that’s not only scaling extremely quickly but also has been profitable since day one – and that’s why … we’re making the biggest single investment in Accel’s more than 35-year history.”
After news of the investment was made public, partner at venture capital firm Sequoia, Andrew Reed, remarked: “Atlassian bootstrapped for 8 [years], raised a $US60m ‘Series A’ from Accel, built a $US30 billion market cap company with happy employees + customers.
“The Atlassian founders were happy enough to team up and invest into 1Password.
“Maybe [it’s] worth paying attention to them on the ‘VC is bad’ debate?”
Ben Grubb is a Desk Editor/Locum Homepage Editor for The Sydney Morning Herald.