Investments

Investing in Confide—corporate whistleblowing technology

Investments

Investing in Confide—corporate whistleblowing technology

Words Founders Factory

November 30th 2023 / 3 min read

We’re excited to announce our latest fintech accelerator investment in partnership with Aviva—Confide. 

The problem

Whistleblowing is gaining recognition as a powerful tool to raise awareness about corporate malpractice and holding c-suites to account. Numerous whistleblowing episodes in recent years have rocked multinationals—and even taken down a few. 

And yet few trusted and protective mechanisms exist to encourage and incentivise corporate whistleblowing. 

Internal whistleblowing is highly ineffective. 95% of whistleblowers initially try to blow the whistle internally before going external. After first reporting attempts, just 16.7% believe their concern triggered internal investigation—the remainder saw no action or little consequence. On top of this, many whistleblowers face retaliation—a quarter are dismissed from their roles. 

Ultimately, it's the companies that lose out. Whistleblowing is an effective way for companies to detect fraud and be able to resolve these internally, rather than externally via the press and regulators (which could result in fines). In 2023, this is becoming particularly pressing, with many regulatory deadlines approaching that compel hundreds of thousands of EU companies to find effective and trusted whistleblowing systems.

There are existing whistleblowing solutions—external hotlines, case management systems, advocacy platforms—but none are successful in solving a core trust issue that prevents many from reporting incidents. 

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The solution

Confide offers a suite of whistleblowing products providing secure, trusted reporting channels and case management which cover the whole process whilst complying with regulation.

The company is founded by Pav Gill, one of the most recognised names in whistleblowing. Pav was the whistleblower who exposed Europe’s largest financial scandal, Wirecard, that resulted in the listed German giant’s unceremonious downfall. 

Confide’s platform consists of several different components. Their core offering is an external whistleblowing platform, allowing employees to confidentially report ethics, compliance and operational issues through anonymous incident forms, two-way anonymous chat functions, and encrypted messaging. 

On top of this, they are offering an outsourced case management function and an embedded whistleblowing training module. These three products together provide a comprehensive solution to make reporting safe and streamlined. 

The team

Pav Gill (CEO & Co-Founder)

Pav draws on extensive legal and compliance expertise over the past decade. At Wirecard, he was head of legal for the Asia-Pacific region when he uncovered multiple accounts of corporate fraud. He was forced out of the company after attempts on his life failed, which resulted in his subsequent whistleblowing. Since then he’s held senior counsel positions at Wise, Zipmex, and super app BigPay, where he was responsible for building legal and compliance teams and frameworks.

Ryan Dougherty (CPO & Co-Founder)

Ryan comes from a strong background of risk and compliance. As one of the key early hires of superapp Grab’s financial services arm, Ryan led risk management and financial crime for high profile product and new market launches across APAC. He also held several senior risk and compliance positions, during which he met Pav.

Why we’re excited to invest

Olly Betts, sector director for fintech, says: “Despite countless scandals and catastrophic failures we live in a world where large enterprises continue to operate with ineffective and distrusted whistleblowing systems. This deters whistleblowing, creating blindspots around compliance, ethics, safety and other risks. Regulators have had enough and are now mandating a higher standard of employee protection. And so has Confide, leading them to develop purpose-built, automated, and AI-powered whistleblowing products. I’m excited to welcome Confide to the Founders Factory Fintech Accelerator and work with Pav and the team to put his lived experience into a solution to make the experience of whistleblowing much easier and smoother.”

What Confide wants to get out of the programme

Pav Gill, Confide CEO and co-founder says “We are delighted to announce our strategic investment from Founders Factory, in partnership with Aviva. This significant milestone is testament to our vision for Confide to be the #1 trusted and secure whistleblowing platform and marks the beginning of a compelling journey as we prepare for our launch in Europe and the UK. We are especially looking forward to tapping into the Founders Factory team’s extensive network and local market expertise, which will be invaluable in our expansion.”

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