What happens when a brand new tech startup finds itself in the middle of one of the worst financial crises the country has ever seen? With a little luck, some intuitiveness, and a lot of hard work, a pivot in the right direction can not only save a company, it can create major success, too.

Brian Murphy founded ReliaQuest in 2007, just as the US was plunging into the Great Recession. While he didn’t know it yet, a DoD contract would come to be instrumental in the company’s pivot from IT to cybersecurity. In the years following, Murphy was able again to lead the company with flexibility to a market that better suited them.

Murphy is the CEO and founder of ReliaQuest, a cybersecurity company serving enterprises globally. ReliaQuest, the leader in Open XDR-as-a-Service, is known for being the force multiplier for security operations teams. He also serves on the board of Embarc Collective, a Tampa Bay-area startup incubator, and is an official member of the Forbes Technology Council.

On today’s episode of Investing in Florida Technology, Murphy speaks about the evolution of ReliaQuest, his advice to founders that are just starting out, and how he still finds time to serve as a chairman on the board of Embarc Collective. He also discusses the big pivot that brought ReliaQuest to where it is today and what he sees happening in the industry looking ahead.

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Some Questions Asked: 

  • Can you tell us a little about your background? (01:50)
  • How did you make the switch to recurring revenue? (06:20)
  • Have you had any trouble attracting talent in Florida? (08:47)
  • How did COVID affect ReliaQuest? (12:02)
  • Where is most of your hiring taking place? (14:06)
  • Are you being acquisitive? Or are you still just growing organically? (15:58)

In this episode, you will learn:

  • What inspired Murphy to start ReliaQuest (2:41)
  • A little about the software team at ReliaQuest (07:50)
  • About the growing cybersecurity industry in Tampa (10:57)
  • Brian’s experience with bootstrapping (14:53)
  • Where Brian sees ReliaQuest going in the next 5-10 years (23:04)

Connect with Brian: