London-based New Vector nabs €4.1 million for ‘Matrix’, its decentralised comms ecosystem

Today New Vector, who is behind new collaboration solutions used by European governments and organisations alike, has announced raising approximately €4.1 million from Automattic Inc. This new investor brings both the financial backing and experience of being the parent company of web publishing and e-commerce platforms WordPress.com, WooCommerce, Jetpack, and enterprise WordPress VIP.

New Vector, founded in 2017, is on a mission to enable governments, businesses and individuals to run their own secure communication infrastructure, while interconnecting via the global Matrix network. So far the startup has developed Riot, the flagship Matrix-based messaging app, and Modular, the leading Matrix-based hosting platform. New Vector, formed by the team who created Matrix, also provides significant development to the Matrix open source project (an open network for secure, decentralised communication which lets organisations and individuals run their own collaboration apps).

Like WordPress, Matrix has a huge spectrum of users from the largest of organisations to individuals. Matrix has a strong installed base within governments, the largest deployment being the French government where it serves the country’s 5.5 million civil servants. Matrix is also popular with enterprises, such as Mozilla, which runs all public communication via Riot. Small businesses and individuals that want complete control over their communications are also rapidly adopting Matrix, which now has around 15.8 million users.

The team already raised €7.7 million in Q4 of 2019 from Notion Capital, firstminute capital and Dawn Capital, taking New Vector’s funding to a total of €16.4 million. They also currently have teams between London and Rennes, France.

Matthew Hodgson, CEO/CTO at New Vector commented: “We’re incredibly pleased to have Automattic on board. It is one of the most successful and well regarded open source companies in the world. We’re completely aligned in our love for the open web, open source and open standards. We share the same philosophy of transparency and data ownership.”

“We’re also looking forward to benefiting from Automattic’s experience in sustainably and responsibly funding and growing open source projects in general. WordPress.com is an excellent example of how one can support development of a project like WordPress without compromising its open source nature. With Riot having just launched end-to-end encryption by default, the additional investment will be directed towards improving Riot’s user experience and expanding Modular, New Vector’s SaaS offering.”

Founder of Automattic, Matt Mullenweg commented: “I am very excited about what New Vector is doing with Matrix – creating a robust, secure, open protocol that can bring all flavors of instant messaging and collaboration together, in the way that the web or email has its foundation layer. I share New Vector’s passion for open source and the power of open standards. I’m excited to see how Automattic and New Vector can collaborate on our shared vision in the future.”

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