Brendan Hannigan, Polaris Venture Partner

We couldn’t be more excited to share the news that we’ve added Brendan to the Polaris partnership team.


Brendan’s a Polaris Repeat Entrepreneur – an exceptional cyber security executive and business partner with whom we’ve built a close relationship in working together to build two portfolio companies — and his addition to our team is a natural next step in our journey together.

As we announced today, in his role as Venture Partner, Brendan will focus on technology infrastructure companies – both funding and founding transformative security, cloud and SaaS companies. More pointedly, companies that have compelling cloud, data science and cognitive computing elements to them.

Brendan comes to us after a highly-successful tenure as General Manager of IBM Security, where he grew that division to be the largest enterprise security provider in the world, with $2B in annual revenue.

But before his big-company operating success, Brendan was an extraordinary entrepreneur and company builder. He served as President and CEO of Q1 Labs, a Polaris-backed security intelligence and analytics company which was acquired by IBM in 2011.  Under his leadership, QRadar, the company’s flagship platform, grew to be the #1 worldwide market share leader.

And before that, he was Vice President of Marketing and Technology at Sockeye Networks, another Polaris-backed company, acquired by Internap in 2003. Prior, he was head of Network Industry Research at Forrester Research.

We’ve had an incredible relationship with Brendan for over 15 years. He’s a great business partner with a deservedly-great reputation for his operating chops and his championing of innovation — both at small startups and global corporations.

He brings exceptional technology industry expertise and perspective to our Technology Investment team.

But as importantly, he — like the rest of our team, who’ve all been entrepreneurs, operators, or both – also brings deep understanding and empathy of the innovation and business-building journey. The journey that founders, management, employee teams and investor partners take together as a successful team.

Brendan’s addition is the latest example of a successful Polaris model in which we’ve recruited successful entrepreneurs, scientists & operators — outstanding individuals with whom we’ve enjoyed long-term relationships —  to identify, invest in and grow compelling companies.

Like Gary Swart, Pat Kinsel and Noel Ruane on our Technology investment team. And folks like  Amir Nashat, Paulina Hill, Alan Crane and Kevin Bitterman on our Healthcare investment team.

As a Venture Partner, Hannigan will spend his time investing in technology startups.  He’ll also seek opportunities, where appropriate, to add value as co-founder, executive chair, or CEO of those companies.

Brendan and Polaris have been together in the trenches as partners for many years. Walking the walk

We couldn’t be more stoked to continue our partnership at this new level.

Ready to team up with the brightest innovators to solve some of the most challenging opportunities in security, cloud and SaaS infrastructure.


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