BlackBerry has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire WatchDox, a move designed to enhance the company’s mobile security platform across enterprise.
Terms of the deal will see WatchDox’s technology offered as a value-added service that complements BlackBerry’s Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) portfolio, and will be available with BES12, a multi-OS EMM solution.
Completion of the transaction is subject to customary closing conditions while terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.
WatchDox is a data security company offering the enterprise file-sync-and-share (EFSS) solutions that allow users to protect, share and work with their files on any device.
The addition of WatchDox will extend BlackBerry’s commitment to help organisations securely connect employees with each other and with corporate information across all mobile and desktop platforms.
BES12 is the foundation for BlackBerry’s extensive portfolio of enterprise security, productivity, and communication and collaboration services.
“BlackBerry is constantly expanding the potential of data security so that it enables more collaboration and sharing rather than creating limitations,” says John Chen, Executive Chairman and CEO, BlackBerry.
“This acquisition represents another key step forward as we transition BlackBerry into the premier platform for secure mobile communications software and applications, supporting all devices and operating systems.
“Together with last year’s Secusmart acquisition, Samsung partnership, our own internal development efforts, and now the acquisition of WatchDox, we now have capabilities to secure communications end-to-end from voice, text, messaging, data and now enterprise file-sync-and share.”
Headquartered in Palo Alto, California, with research and development facilities in Petah Tikva, Israel, WatchDox serves organisations across a variety of industry sectors including government, healthcare, financial services, manufacturing, law and media.
“Enterprises require secure mobile solutions that enable users to more easily collaborate and increase their productivity,” adds Moti Rafalin, CEO and founder, WatchDox.
“WatchDox meets this need by uniting data-centric security with a user-friendly experience that is highly valued by our customers.
“The combination of BlackBerry’s security leadership and EMM portfolio with WatchDox technology will bring the most productive and collaborative mobility solution to organisations that need innovative ways to conduct business securely and efficiently.”
The acquisition of WatchDox will form the basis of a new security-focused BlackBerry R&D centre in Israel.
BlackBerry’s acquisition of WatchDox follows last year’s purchase of Secusmart, a high-security voice and data encryption, provider and is the latest demonstration of the company’s commitment to being the first name in enterprise mobile security.
At present, BlackBerry customers include all G7 governments, 16 of the G20 governments, 10 out of 10 of the largest global banks and law firms, and the top five largest managed healthcare, investment services, and oil and gas companies.
“Sharing data outside the corporate walls can significantly increase workforce productivity, but can open an enterprise to serious financial and reputational risk if not implemented with the proper control,” says Maribel Lopez, Principal and Founder, Lopez Research.
“WatchDox provides this control and truly focuses on data-centric security.
“Their enterprise file-sync-and-share technology will be an important enhancement to BlackBerry’s cross-platform EMM portfolio, as it delivers new capabilities while ensuring the level of security that enterprises have come to expect from BlackBerry.”