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Former Unity, SAP and Yahoo! CISO Justin Somaini Joins YL Ventures as Partner
[February 06, 2024]

Former Unity, SAP and Yahoo! CISO Justin Somaini Joins YL Ventures as Partner

Global cybersecurity venture capital firm, YL Ventures today announced the appointment of Justin Somaini as a full-time Partner in the firm. Justin, a renowned leader in the global cybersecurity industry and the former Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) of global giants Unity, SAP, Yahoo! and Symantec, will take on a leadership position within the firm's executive team.

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Justin Somaini Joins YL Ventures as Partner (Photo: Business Wire)

Justin Somaini Joins YL Ventures as Partner (Photo: Business Wire)

Justin has served in various security roles in global enterprises during his 30-year career, positioning him at the forefront of the industry. After years spent articulating the needs on the customer side, he is excited to transition to the side that propels the industry forward by addressing these needs through groundbreaking innovation. Justin's relationship with YL Ventures began over a decade ago when he became one of the firm's first advisors and has since been actively involved in YL Ventures' Venture Advisory Board - an esteemed network of over 120 leading CISOs and security practitioners from Fortune 100 and high-growth companies, who advise the firm's portfolio companies.

Joining YL Ventures as a partner will enable Justin to play a meaningful role in the foundational stages of company-building that will shape the future of the cybersecurity industry. Justin will join the board of directors of several of YL Ventures' existing portfolio companies and lead the firm's US-based Business Development team, helping portfolio companies cultivate partnerships and manage customer engagements. Leveraging his extensive cybersecurity background, business management skills and close relationships with global cybersecurity leaders, Justin will be instrumental in helping the firm's founders build the next wave of cybersecurity market dominators.

YL Ventures accelerates the growth of the industry's top-tier founders, leveraging an in-house team of professionals and a high-caliber, influential cybersecurity network. The addition of an industry heavyweight such as Justin to the YL Ventures' executive team will act as a force multiplier to this group of industry experts, augmenting the firm's investment processes with critical customer insights.

"Joining YL Ventures' exceptional team is an unparalleled opportunity within our industry," says Somaini. "With a track record of seeding cybersecurity unicorns and investing in startups that had an indelible impact on the market, the firm's deep-rooted expertise in cybersecurity is widely renowned. I'm excited to use my experience to help founders create longstanding, 'must-have' and not 'nice-to-have' solutions and enduring category leading companies."

"Beyond his technical expertise and phenomenal reputation within the global cybersecurity industry, Justin has a holistic understanding and approach to this dynamic and complex field," says Yoav Leitersdorf, YL Ventures' Managing Partner. "He is passionate about understanding the core problems his colleagues face daily and is equally passionate about finding solutions that will help not only security teams but will also be outstanding business investments. This versatility and well-rounded approach, coupled with his drive to help build companies from the ground up, makes him a perfect fit for us at YL Ventures."

About YL Ventures

YL Ventures funds and supports visionary cybersecurity entrepreneurs from seed to scale to help them evolve transformative ideas into market-leading companies. The firm accelerates company growth with tailored support through its powerful network of Chief Information Security Officers, global industry leaders and a dedicated team of multidisciplinary experts. Based in Silicon Valley, New York and Tel Aviv, YL Ventures manages five funds with $800M in total AUM. The firm has a track record of seeding cybersecurity unicorns such as Axonius and Orca Security and its portfolio companies have been successfully acquired by high-profile, global industry leaders including Palo Alto Networks, Microsoft, Okta and Proofpoint. In 2022, YL Ventures ranked 8th out of over 250 venture capital firms in PitchBook's prestigious Global Manager Performance Score League Tables and was the only cybersecurity-focused VC to secure a top 10 spot.

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