Behind the Investment: Persona

Published

In a world of massive digital transformation, it has become harder for companies to identify and build deep relationships with all their key stakeholders – customers, employees, contractors, and vendors. At the same time, these relationships have never been more important to scaling and building a successful company. The examples are endless: Brex needing to meet AML / KYC requirements before issuing credit, Postmates verifying courier identities for trust, safety, and fraud prevention, or even an online education company validating test taker identities in real-time during exams. 

Historically, companies have been forced to rely upon a fragmented set of tools and processes to validate identity; these legacy methods have focused on a single point of identity at a single point in time (sign-up), forcing the companies to be in the dark on that relationship past initial contact. This has often resulted in clunky implementation processes and poor customer service, given most of these offerings only focus on a sliver of identity. In the digital era, the old system of “one and done” doesn’t cut it anymore. Digital identity has fundamentally changed: it is now all about the ongoing relationship and trust between a company and its stakeholders. 

Enter Persona. Persona is building the comprehensive end-to-end infrastructure for businesses to verify, understand, and protect digital identities. The platform is built on next-gen rails, meaning Persona is highly modular (programmable), API-based (easy to deploy), and complete (a one-stop-shop). In practice, that means the company can help with identity collection, verification, and management on an ongoing basis – all with no human touch given its differentiated orchestration layer and native automation.

The result? A seamless, scalable verification process for customers and employees alike; higher trust and safety standards for businesses; and improved productivity for developers.

The more we learned about Persona and spent time with Rick Song – Persona’s co-founder / CEO – the more confidence we had that this is the team to back. Rick is a pioneer in the identity space from his time building and scaling identity tooling for the Cash App at Square – and, together with co-founder/ CTO, Charles Yeh, he’s recruited a world-class team, garnering glowing feedback from employees and peers. 

And, customers have taken notice – Persona grew revenue 20x and total customers 5x in the past year (!) with no sign of slowing. Understanding identity is mission critical to building trust in the digital era – and we couldn’t be more excited to be backing Rick and the team on their journey!

  • Josha Loria, Onsite Analyst

    Joshua Loria, Investment Associate

    Josh joined Insight in 2018 and is an Investor on Insight Partners Public Equities’ (IPPE) investment team. He leads investments in high growth enterprise software, marketplace, consumer internet, and FinTech companies with a focus on crossover opportunities.  Josh began his career at Insight as part of Onsite’s Strategy team where he was…
  • John Wolff, Managing Director

    John joined Insight in 2020 and is a Managing Director and the Chief Investment Officer of Insight Partners Public Equities (IPPE). Prior to Insight Partners, John was the Founder and CIO of C243 Capital Management.  John was also Head of Technology Investing and a Portfolio Manager at Omega Advisors from 2015 to 2020.  Before joining Omega…