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Founder and CIO of Hungary’s most-funded tech startup uses ethos of self-reliance and strong partnerships to drive innovation

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Tamas Kadar - founder and acting CIO of SEON

SEON

  • SEON, a fraud prevention service, is Hungary’s most well-funded tech startup ever. 
  • Founder and CIO Tamas Kadar uses an ethos of self-reliance and strong partnerships to drive innovation.
  • This article is part of Innovation Leaders, a series examining how business leaders view their role in driving tech innovation.

Tamas Kadar is the 28-year-old founder and acting CIO of Anglo-Hungarian SEON, the world’s fastest growing fraud prevention business. After recently receiving a $94m series B from IVP, SEON is Hungary’s most well-funded tech start-up ever. 

The business is at an important moment in its growth journey, having secured $94m of Series B funding investment, led by Silicon Valley-based IVP back in April 2022. It’s in hyper-scale. “As a business, our current priority is to rapidly scale up operations, while also entering new markets and geographic territories,” Kadar said. “To do this, we’re actively pursuing talent acquisition and bolstering our company ranks with amazing new team members weekly, supporting further growth for SEON.” 

SEON aims to be the fraud prevention choice for online businesses accepting new customers, a big market segment. “More than anything, our aim is to help eradicate online fraud,” he said. “I hate to say it, but in general, right now, fraudsters are winning the war online. Too many businesses are losing out to fraudulent activity, and it’s our mission to make sure that ends as soon as possible.”

SEON’s mission is a global one. This year, the company opened an office in Austin, Texas as part of its plans to further develop the brand in the US and triple the size of its US team. “Additionally,” Kadar said, “we will look to make further inroads within the APAC region, and of course continue to reaffirm our position in Europe, with our commercial HQ in London. LATAM expansion will come later in the year.”

The economic downturn means that fraud is only going to increase. “As such, businesses now need to proactively invest in defense before the problem worsens,” Kadar said. “Ultimately, this changing market dynamic has to affect how businesses evaluate online fraud. Moving forward, businesses will be unable to simply absorb company losses as they may have before.”

Online fraud is a real cat-and-mouse game. “We’re continually investing in technologies that allow us to scale across industries and geographic territories,” Kadar said. From the beginning, the company’s approach to core tech has been to build your own. This, he said, “has allowed our system to be highly flexible. To support this, we’ve also had to form strong partnerships in the spaces relevant to our technology, which have helped us to further expand our capabilities across several markets.” This support includes the likes of Revolut, NuBank, and mollie, all at the cutting edge of their respective fields. 

Kadar is excited about where new tech will take the company and the industry. “In many ways, it feels like we’re on the precipice of a new era of technology, which may be dominated by more immersive experiences and decentralised solutions,” he said. “As a fan of technology, this prospect really excites me. I think in the next few years we’ll start to see big changes in the ways we connect with one another online, whether that be through the metaverse, or from some of the Web 3.0 solutions coming to the fore.” However, he warned, “this industry excitement must be tempered with a recognition that effective fraud prevention protocols will soon be more important than ever.”

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