Nedbank has invested equity in an industry-leading, technology-led emergency management platform. RapidDeploy. The bank is the first South African firm to invest in RapidDeploy, which was established in South Africa after its founders Steven Raucher and Brett Meyerowitz experienced the antiquated, legacy technology that was available within the country’s public safety sector.
Raucher was devastated by the death of his brother at sea. He volunteered to help with the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI), South Africa. He realized that emergency tools could not reach the people he needed and save lives quickly and efficiently. Meyerowitz reached the same conclusion when he was a volunteer paramedic. RapidDeploy was created to save lives and reduce response times.
According to Johann Van Zyl: Head Principal and Alternative Investment at Nedbank Corporate and Investment Banking, the bank’s decision to invest in RapidDeploy was based on the strong alignment of the company’s innovation-led business model with Nedbank’s policy of investing in world-leading businesses and technologies that can deliver sustainable positive impact.
“At Nedbank, we recognise that there’s far more to technology than just enabling customer engagement or helping to build a business,” Van Zyl explains, “and the fact that RapidDeploy technology is literally saving lives, means this venture capital technology investment gives good effect to our Nedbank purpose of applying our financial expertise to do good.”
RapidDeploy relocated their headquarters and main focus to Austin in Texas in the United States. They have partnered with nine states, as well numerous emergency communication centers, to bring modern technology and public safety to the entire country. Customers frequently send Save Stories, which are stories that share the benefits of technology and give specific examples of instances in which it helped save lives. Like in Kansas, where a caller had a stroke and couldn’t talk; and in Navajo County, Arizona where a kidnapping victim was rescued; or in Sarasota County, Florida where a caller was located during a hurricane, and many other compelling Customer Stories.
RapidDeploy, a company headquartered in the United States of America, keeps its roots in South Africa with a portion of their engineering and product departments based there. These teams bring revolutionary technology to public security, which is why Nedbank invested. RapidDeploy currently focuses on US public safety, but additional investment from global corporations opens up opportunities to spread the technology around the globe.
“We are honored that Nedbank has chosen to invest in RapidDeploy,” said Steven Raucher, Co-Founder and CEO of RapidDeploy. “As our first South African institutional investor, Nedbank ensures our continued investment in our teams in South Africa and enables us to expand and grow.”
Van Zyl points out that the investment in RapidDeploy is in keeping with Nedbank’s venture capital mandate to invest in, and partner with, disruptive, category-defining technology companies.
“As an on-balance-sheet investor, our venture capital approach is highly strategic, and we prefer to work closely with our investee companies,” he says, “so we are looking forward to supporting RapidDeploy’s future growth and expansion as the opportunities present, particularly given that their success and growth will ultimately translate into even more lives saved.”
RapidDeploy has been able to secure funding from Nedbank and other venture capitalists to ensure that it can continue to develop modern technology to help people around the globe.