Israeli cybersecurity and web privacy software company Kape Technologies, controlled by Teddy Sagi, has reported a 90% jump in revenue in preliminary financial results for 2021. Kape ended 2021 with revenue of $230.5 million, up 89% from 2020, and 14% higher than the upper threshold of its own forecast of $197-202 million. Adjusted EBITDA amounted to $77 million, which was also above the forecasted range of $73-76 million, and compares with EBITDA of $39 million in 2020.
In 2021, which was a turning point for the company, Kape completed two large acquisitions. The first was Israeli company Webselense for $151 million in cash and shares, and the second was ExpressVPN for $936 million in cash and shares. The acquisition of ExpressVPN was the biggest-ever acquisition carried out over the past five years of a foreign company, by an Israeli company, and it made Kape into a global giant in the fast-growing VPN market. Kape completed the acquisition of ExpressVPN in December 2021.
Kape stressed that even without the acquisitions, the company presented impressive organic growth: revenue from Kape's activities, without the contribution of ExpressVPN, amounted to $212.5 million, above the upper threshold of the most recent forecast provided. These actions, as the company demonstrates in its announcement, allowed Kape to increase its investment in product development and thus position itself as a world leader in its field.
Kape's substantial revenue growth is expressed in operational parameters. The company's subscription base grew during 2021 by 158% and currently amounts to over 6.5 million paid subscriptions. The rate of retention of subscriptions amounts to 82%. The company also mentions that 500,000 new subscriptions from organic activities were added in 2021, an increase of 18% compared with 2020, and at the same time the company succeeded in lowering costs in acquiring customers.
Looking to 2022: Kape ratified its forecast, which includes the results of ExpressVPN: revenue of $610-624 million and adjusted EBITDA of $166-172 million. The company will report its full financial results for 2021 on March 22. The company is currently traded with a market cap of $2 billion, a rise of more than 100% over the past year.
Kape CEO Ido Erlichman said, "2021 was an exceptional year for Kape, in which it completed two more strategic acquisitions, in our road map to becoming the world leader in digital security and privacy for consumers. The fact that we succeeded in doing this, while at the same time exceeding our performance targets, and continued to provide ongoing organic growth, demonstrates well the quality and dedication of our team. We expect to continue on our strong growth track in 2022, with Kape now serving more than 6.5 million paying customers. We believe that this is only the start of our journey to provide a genuinely secure and private digital experience."