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Press Release

NYCEDC Partners with Team8 to Strengthen City’s Cyber NYC Initiative

Nov 06 2019
NYC Announces Winners for Global Cybersecurity Competition

Collaboration Leverages Cyber Innovation Expertise and Company's New York City Headquarters to Develop Local Talent

NEW YORK, NY—New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and venture group Team8 today announced a strategic partnership to bolster New York City’s cybersecurity ecosystem and workforce through the Cyber NYC initiative, a $100 million public-private investment to make New York City a global leader in cyber innovation. Team8 plans to build a hub at its New York headquarters to develop local talent and innovative solutions for a thriving cybersecurity sector.

NYCEDC’s partnership with Team8 draws on the company’s unique expertise in identifying, training and recruiting world-class research and development talent; bringing new technologies in cyber, data and artificial intelligence domains to market; and access to insights from industry leaders. The partnership will include collaborative initiatives with CUNY, NYU, Columbia and Fullstack Academy through curriculum development, guest lecturing, adjunct professorship, hiring students and interns, and researching and scaling innovative cyber solutions.

“New York City has quickly become the international capital for cybersecurity and a leader in tech innovation,” said NYCEDC President and CEO James Patchett. “As we build on this success, EDC is excited to partner with Team8 as they develop a new cyber hub in New York City and lend their valuable expertise to our game changing Cyber NYC initiative. We look forward to collaborating on projects that help fuel the next generation of talent in the city’s growing cyber and tech ecosystems.”

Team8’s Co-Founder and CEO Nadav Zafrir, former Commander of Israel’s Intelligence Corps Unit 8200, has joined Cyber NYC’s advisory board and will focus on talent development within New York City’s cyber ecosystem.

“We’re really excited about our joint activities with EDC and we’re honored to work with leaders from the ecosystem to establish New York City as a global cyber capital,” says Nadav Zafrir. “We hope to foster a new level of excitement and prestige around cyber to drive the City’s burgeoning tech ecosystem and cultivate exceptional, highly skilled talent.”

As cybersecurity threats intensify, enterprises are struggling to fill the growing number of cybersecurity positions, leaving them vulnerable to potentially devastating attacks. The cybersecurity workforce gap is on pace to hit 3.5 million worldwide and the sector enjoys a zero percent unemployment rate. Currently in New York, there are about 20,000 job openings in the cyber field. In a recent study nearly 70% of cyber professionals say their teams are understaffed and hiring managers say it can take over six months to find qualified cybersecurity candidates.

The NYCEDC - Team8 partnership will focus on three tracks: Training and developing talent, growing New York City’s cyber ecosystem and identifying the next big breakthrough idea from academia. To better prepare the workforce of the future, full-time and internship opportunities across both Team8 and its portfolio companies will be created for local talent in the group’s New York City headquarters.

"Team8 has cultivated a unique model and process to bring exceptional teams together to solve tangible problems,” says Former NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers. “This forward-thinking approach will provide a major boost to New York’s cyber ecosystem when interpreted on city scale and I look forward to working with both parties to make it happen.”

“Team8 has built a sound company portfolio and established itself as key player in the cybersecurity ecosystem,” said Uzi Scheffer, CEO of SOSA. “I’m excited to see them partner with NYCEDC and Cyber NYC, as we collectively strive to develop cybersecurity talent and scale innovative companies in New York City.”

Additionally, Team8 is working with Columbia University’s Inventors to Founders Initiative (I2F) on sourcing and evaluating projects to glean breakthrough technologies that can transform the industry and create a new wave of NYC cyber startups. Team8 will serve as mentors to the program and its companies, co-hosting accelerator events, research symposiums, and other ecosystem building programs.

“We are excited to work with Team8, EDC, and our other partners in Cyber NYC to source and support game-changing technologies coming out of university campuses,” said Daniel Goetzel, Executive Director of Inventors to Founders Initiative.

“The issue of cyber security will only get more prevalent as technology advances,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “I’m thankful to the NYCEDC for leading the way in this field, and for continuing to develop initiatives that will train and develop talent in this complex new ecosystem.”

"In this 21st century, it is critical we continuously find new and innovative ways to rise and inventively face the cybersecurity challenges of tomorrow," said Council Member Paul Vallone, Chair of the Committee on Economic Development. "This partnership between EDC and Team8 will help train New York City's next generation of cybersecurity professionals and launch them directly into in-demand careers, making our City more prepared to meet any of the challenges that cybersecurity threats may present to our society."

“This exciting partnership has the potential to grow New York’s cybersecurity network and maximize the opportunities for technologically talented people,” said Council Member Robert Holden. “It is important for us to promote these skills as viable career pathways and encourage everyone to think proactively as the tech world is rapidly expanding. I’m proud of the NYCEDC and its Cyber NYC initiative for taking on that challenge.”

The NYCEDC - Team8 partnership is officially launching today at Team8’s 5th annual Rethink event at the Nasdaq. Team8 joins Cyber NYC’s existing operators CUNY, NYU, and Columbia University, SOSA, JVP and Fullstack, as well as partners, Goldman Sachs, PricewaterhouseCoopers and edX, amongst others.

Rethink is a forum for C-level executives to create a framework for open discussion on the mutual challenges they face across sectors and industries. The event’s speakers include Justin Berman, CISO, Dropbox; Beth Smith, GM, IBM Watson; and NYCEDC President and CEO James Patchett.

New York City Economic Development Corporation is a mission-driven, non-profit organization that creates shared prosperity across New York City by strengthening neighborhoods and growing good jobs. NYCEDC works with and for communities to provide them with the resources they need to thrive, and invests in projects that increase sustainability, support job growth, develop talent, and spark innovation to strengthen the City’s competitive advantage. To learn more about our work and initiatives, please visit us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

About Cyber NYC
Cyber NYC, the City’s $100M initiative to grow the cybersecurity sector, leverages a roster of world-renowned partners to launch a Global Cyber Center, to fuel commercialization, research, and new talent pipelines to train the cyber workforce of the future.

About Team8
Team8 is a venture group solving problems of magnitude. Leveraging its unrivaled military intelligence expertise, in-depth research capabilities, extensive C-level executive network and unique company building model, the group creates and accelerate category-leading companies. Team8 is backed by some of the world’s most renowned businesses including Cisco, Microsoft, AT&T, Walmart, Airbus, Softbank, Accenture, Qualcomm, Moody’s, Munich-Re, Dimension Data, Barclays, Nokia and Scotiabank. For more information, please visit

About Cyber NYC Inventors to Founders Initiative
The Inventors to Founders Initiative (I2F) is an early stage startup accelerator and talent network for NYC cyber startups. Led by the NYCEDC and Columbia University and in partnership with Cornell Tech, NYU and CUNY, I2F is developing startup programs and funding structures to catalyze commercialization of cutting-edge research.  The startup accelerator is open to academic-affiliated startups founded by students, faculty members and alumni of universities in New York.  I2F plans to expand its accelerator network in coming years, bringing in additional world-class academic partners.