NAB, Westpac and Qantas invest in Data Republic
National Australia Bank, Westpac Banking Corp and Qantas have taken stakes in Data Republic, a Sydney-based start-up that has designed a platform which allows companies and government to exchange data in a secure environment.
The deal indicates some of Australia’s largest companies are considering sharing data with each other to enhance service delivery but under strict controls to protect customer privacy.
NAB, Westpac and Qantas have invested a combined $10.5 million into Data Republic’s recent Series A equity fundraising round. The stakes were acquired through Qantas Loyalty, NAB’s venture capital fund, NAB Ventures, and Westpac’s venture capital fund, Reinventure Group.
The deal is Qantas’ first investment in a tech start-up in the airline’s 95-year history and the first investment by NAB Ventures, the bank’s VC fund established last year by chief executive Andrew Thorburn.
Westpac has been working with Data Republic on the design of its security protocols and is also working with the start-up to develop the world’s first “data banking” service. This will allow Westpac corporate clients to securely separate and store customer information on dedicated bank-grade security infrastructure while conducting broader data exchanges. Westpac chief strategy officer Gary Thursby said Data Republic “delivers bank-grade security protocols and governance to the storage and management of data”.
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