A young boy doing his homework on the computer with his mother in the background

Ontario, Canada’s robust tech ecosystem, rich talent pool and culture of innovation are key to 1Password fulfilling their global mission to make “everyone safe online”

According to a recent Forbes article, the average person spends almost seven hours consuming digital content each day and has over 100 password-protected digital accounts.

A Family together in a room, securely looking at individual screens while watching TV

Those two stats combined add up to a significant level of risk for people around the world—especially when you consider that four out of five global data breaches are perpetrated from weak and stolen passwords. Recent trends, side effects of a global pandemic and cybersecurity statistics reveal a significant increase in hacked and breached data from sources that are increasingly common in the workplace and at home, like mobile and IoT devices. Additionally, recent security research suggests that most companies and individuals have poor cybersecurity practices because the need to keep track of strong, unique passwords has become increasingly complicated.

An innovative solution to this problem was created right here in Ontario, Canada. 1Password is a secure password manager that keeps individuals, families and businesses safe online.

Founded by Dave and Sara Teare and Roustem and Natalia Karimov in St. Thomas, Ontario in 2005, 1Password has grown from two couples with an idea to over 400 employees, servicing millions of customers in over 20 countries across the globe.

Much of that growth has occurred in the past two years after 1Password’s first-ever round of funding in 2019, in which they raised US$200 million from Accel and Slack Fund, among other angel investors. In the nearly two years since, the company has almost doubled its number of paying business customers to 90,000 and hit US$120 million in annual revenue.

The 1Password application as seen on a mobile device next to a computer

This rapid growth led to a second round of investment in July 2021, when it was announced that the company had raised an additional US$100 million of funding at a US$2 billion valuation. Investors include Ashton Kutcher’s Sound Ventures; Tobias Lütke and Harley Finkelstein, Shopify’s CEO and president respectively; Anthony Casalena, founder and CEO of Squarespace; and Kevin Hartz, co-founder and chairman of Eventbrite. At the close of the investment, Brandon Chu, VP of Product Acceleration at Shopify, said, “1Password is an incredible success story of the Canadian tech ecosystem and has massive potential ahead of it.”

And it’s clear that 1Password believes that Ontario’s tech ecosystem provides the right foundation to reach that potential and achieve its global mission to make “everyone safe online.” While their growth over the past two years has been international, the majority of the organization’s personnel growth has been focused in Ontario, with the team jumping from 53 to 210—just a small portion of the 300,000 highly-skilled tech workers who call Ontario home.

A man looking at his secure desktop computer

“Ontario has a great foundation for technology and innovation,” Jeff Shiner, 1Password’s CEO, told us. “The first round of investment gave us the opportunity to grow and grow up as a company. We’d always been profitable and grown organically. Now, however, we’ve accelerated our growth in a province rich in talent.”

Although the province’s talent pool is deep, the competition for top-class talent is intense, which is why 1Password’s ability to attract the best talent through the clarity of their mission and values has been so vital to their continued growth. “We help people stay safe online. That’s an important mission that people want to be a part of,” Shiner explained. “And culturally, I always say we’re the best mix of startup and mature company. We’re nimble in our approach, and everyone has the power to evolve and grow in new ways, but we also have stability, benefits and career pathing opportunities.”

A Professional man working from home using 1password software

This focus on the human experience of work and 1Password’s services is reflected in the organization’s vision for the coming years. “When it comes to internet security, we believe the secure way should be the easy way. Our job is to continue finding ways to make our customers’ experience better,” explained Shiner. In the near term, this includes adding new services to their offering, including providing actionable insights to their enterprise-scale clients. “As a password manager, we want individual customers to come for the security and stay for the convenience; and for commercial clients, they should come for security and stay for the infrastructure.”

From the ground up, 1Password was built to solve the problem of internet security as people worldwide spend more of their time online. Yet, 1Password is just one of over 40,000 technology companies operating out of Ontario. Their success to date is built on a foundation of talent, vision and investment, all built and evolved in Ontario, Canada.

Learn more about what makes Ontario one of the most robust cybersecurity sectors in the world.

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