January 19, 2023

Cybersecurity startup wins incentives to add nearly 500 jobs in Boulder County

DENVER — The Colorado Economic Development Commission voted unanimously Thursday morning to extend a tax-incentive offer to an unnamed Boulder County cybersecurity startup with major plans for growth. 

The company — referred to by Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade staff as Project Disco, but identified by BizWest as Radicl Defense Inc., “secures small- and medium-sized businesses from nation state-level cyberthreats,” according to an OEDIT memo.

The state approved a performance-based tax-incentive package that could be worth as much as $2.43 million over eight years should the recipient meet its goal of adding 491 new jobs in Boulder County. Project Disco also must show evidence that it has raised $2.5 million in new capital by the end of 2023. 

It is the commission’s practice not to identify companies OEDIT is recruiting until incentives are accepted. However, a project representative identified himself Tuesday on Zoom as “Dave with Radicl.” That person appeared to be Radicl co-founder David Graff.

Project Disco, according to OEDIT, has eight employees, all of whom are in Colorado. Boosting that headcount to nearly 500 in eight years would represent an extremely impressive growth trajectory.

“While this project projects significant growth from a small startup to nearly 500 employees, it is worth noting that this employment projection is based upon the previous experience of one of the company’s founders, who has previously developed a successful startup from a similar position that ultimately sold for over $60 million,” OEDIT said.

Radicl Defense co-founder Chris Petersen was a co-founder of Boulder-based security information and event management firm, LogRhythm Inc., which had a majority stake bought by a private equity firm in 2018.

In order to achieve the growth it expects, Project Disco plans to build its client list “from the defense space,” according to an OEDIT memo. “… Colorado’s concentration of defense companies and U.S. military facilities and personnel provides a supportive ecosystem, potential clients, and labor pool.”

That labor pool is expected to fill positions such as “engineers, sales and marketing professionals, product designers, cyber and security analysts, and finance roles,” OEDIT said. 

Project Disco had mulled the idea of establishing its headquarters in Orlando, Florida, rather than Boulder County.

“We were seriously considering moving our headquarters down there” because of a more beneficial tax environment, project representative Dave said Thursday. 

But Colorado’s incentive system was “relatively straightforward and not a lot of burden,” he said. Access to those incentives “really impacted our decision to remain in Colorado.”

DENVER — The Colorado Economic Development Commission voted unanimously Thursday morning to extend a tax-incentive offer to an unnamed Boulder County cybersecurity startup with major plans for growth. 

The company — referred to by Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade staff as Project Disco, but identified by BizWest as Radicl Defense Inc., “secures small- and medium-sized businesses from nation state-level cyberthreats,” according to an OEDIT memo.

The state approved a performance-based tax-incentive package that could be worth as much as $2.43 million over eight years should the recipient meet its goal of adding 491 new jobs in Boulder County. Project…

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