North East Venture Fund

Cyber firm appoints new chair after introduction from Mercia

Newcastle-based Melius Cyber has appointed experienced technology leader Matt Little as Chair to support its future growth.

The appointment follows its recent £350,000 investment from the North East Venture Fund (NEVF), supported by the European Regional Development Fund and managed by Mercia. Matt – who was introduced to the business by Mercia – has held senior roles in a range of tech companies spanning gaming, cybersecurity, financial services, government and media, and been involved in a number of business sales and acquisitions.

As a founding team member of Edinburgh cybersecurity business ZoneFox, he helped to lead its sale to the US company Fortinet in 2018 and went on to hold a senior role within Fortinet. More recently he was on the board of two Mercia-backed companies – GENBA, which was acquired by the digital gaming and monetisation platform Azerion, and Collabco which was acquired by Ready Education.

A spin-off from Newcastle IT business Melius Group, Melius Cyber helps companies to detect vulnerabilities in their IT network. Its platform CyberSafe Plus, which was developed specifically for SMEs, automates the process of vulnerability scanning and penetration testing in which cyber experts simulate attacks to detect weaknesses in the system.

Matt Little says: “I am delighted to join Melius’s board to help it to achieve its mission to develop ground-breaking solutions that enable organisations to achieve cyber certifications and provide constant protection against advanced cyber threats.

“Mercia provides so much more than investment for growth – access to Mercia’s expertise and to their team is a real game-changer for Melius. I am excited to be a part of the company’s journey as it moves to the next stage in its success story.”

Ian Wilson, Fund Principal at Mercia, said: “Matt’s experience in the tech sector – which includes scaling and selling a cybersecurity business – means he is well suited for the role of Chair at Melius. Having the right board members can make a big difference to a company’s prospects as they bring with them a wealth of knowledge and contacts.

“This appointment demonstrates the wider support that Mercia provides – not only in providing investment but also in putting the right support and people in place to help companies scale and grow.”