Growing from a local tech start-up to an ASX listed global security industry leader, RightCrowd has gone from strength to strength operating in the export market. However, during a scale-up, securing finance to support an export transaction can be difficult. This is where Export Finance Australia was able to support the journey.
Founded in 2004, RightCrowd provides safety, security and compliance solutions to businesses across a broad range of industries, including financial services, mining, industrial and the high-tech market.
RightCrowd offers products for visitor management, workforce access management, presence control, access analytics and contact tracing wearables. The team began deploying solutions at some of the largest companies in the world and rolling out systems globally between 2012 and 2017.
By 2021, the business had grown to over 150 employees across offices in Seattle, New Jersey, Belgium, The Philippines and the Gold Coast, Australia. Some 85% of RightCrowd’s revenue at this time was coming from international markets and 67% from the North American market alone.
While RightCrowd has seen great success from exporting, it has not come without its challenges. “Probably the biggest challenge we had was lack of capital,” Peter Hill, CEO at RightCrowd said. “We were a bootstrap company, and trying to export without funding in place, and trying to land some of the biggest customers in the world, is not particularly easy.”
Exploring finance opportunities
RightCrowd’s journey to date has not been traditional, nor have the finance solutions needed to support it.
As a company that doesn’t bring with it any tangible assets for security, RightCrowd typically didn’t have any options for lines with the banks. To finance the business, the team raised capital in the private markets, made the most of multiple government grants available including research and development and the emerging market development grant (EMDG).
After moving into the manufacturing space to produce contact tracing wearables, Peter decided to explore what solutions might be available with Export Finance Australia. Carrying raw materials and stock for manufacturing requires additional working capital; finding the right finance solution to support these operations is crucial.
Choosing the right partner
The global pandemic impacted the business in varying ways. Some areas slowed, while others grew. During this period, RightCrowd won another large contract with a global tech giant and needed support to deliver the project. This is where Export Finance Australia’s help was key.