The Download: Entrepreneur sells his 2-year-old start-up KikScore to Google

Until earlier this year, Rajeev Malik was a part-time entrepreneur. He worked as a general manager at Herndon-based Network Solutions, then spent nights and weekends building his start-up KikScore.

Today, Malik is between jobs.

That’s because KikScore’s technology and products were bought by Google for an undisclosed sum last week in the kind of deal many entrepreneurs can only pine for. He left Network Solutions just months earlier to focus on the venture full time.

Founded in 2010, the three-man firm developed a digital report card for small businesses designed to demonstrate their trustworthiness to customers. The report gave the business a score based on a variety of characteristics, including where its Web site is registered, how long the business has been operating and whether it has a return policy.

“For us, [the acquisition] is a realization that we put in the blood, sweat and tears to put this product together and Google can now take it to the next level,” he said in an interview.

But there isn’t much rest for the eager entrepreneur. Malik, a lawyer by training, has another venture he plans to start in the coming weeks.

Capital gains

Herndon-based Xceedium has raised $12 million, executives plan to announce today, as the cybersecurity firm looks to help corporations and federal agencies shift their computing to the cloud.

Chief executive Glenn Hazard said the money will allow the 65-person firm to bulk up its research and development divisions, which are based in Jersey City, N.J., and Ottawa. It will also add sales and marketing reps as part of a deal to provide cybersecurity and monitoring services to Amazon Web Services clients.

Xceedium tracks how a firm or federal agency’s network is being accessed and altered by users who have special privileges, such as administrators or contractors. Xceedium then makes security recommendations.

About 50 percent of the firm’s work comes from the federal government, including the Defense Department and Department of Homeland Security. Private-sector clients hail from financial services, retail and telecommunications, among other industries.

ArrowPath Venture Partners, an existing investor, led the round. Western Technology Investment joined as a new financier.

overlys@washpost.com

Steven Overly covers the business of technology, biotechnology and venture capital in the Washington region for The Washington Post and its weekly Capital Business publication. In that capacity, he has written about start-up struggles, investment trends and major drug discoveries.
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