BlackBerry is acquiring Good Technology, a provider of mobile device management (MDM) software, in a deal valued at $425 million, evealed the company in a surprise announcement just before the Labor Day weekend in the U.S.
Once the smartphone leader in corporate environments, BlackBerry's fortunes took a turn for the worse. Faced with the explosive popularity of Apple's iPhone and smartphones featuring Google's Android mobile operating system, BlackBerry's share of the smartphone market recently plunged into sub-single-digit territory.
One bright spot is the company's legendarily secure enterprise mobile messaging and management platform. Now, the company is bolstering that part of its business by acquiring Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Good Technology.
The deal will help BlackBerry "better solve one of the biggest struggles for CIOs today, especially those in regulated industries: securely managing devices across any platform," said John Chen, CEO of BlackBerry, in a statement. "By providing even stronger cross-platform capabilities our customers will not have to compromise on their choice of operating systems, deployment models or any level of privacy and security."
Another factor: Good Technology's desirable customer base. "Like BlackBerry, Good has a very strong presence in enterprises and governments around the world and, with this transaction, BlackBerry will enhance its sales and distribution capabilities and further grow its enterprise software revenue stream," Chen said.
In an Aug. 4 blog post related to the acquisition, Christy Wyatt, CEO of Good Technology, noted that "Good customers represent more than 50 percent of the Fortune 100 and more than 6,200 global customers operate our service in over 189 countries delivering more than 2.5 [billion] messages a week."
Beyond mobile devices, Wyatt said the combined company would be better positioned to help tackle the challenges of implementing some Internet of Things (IoT) technologies. "The Good Dynamics platform and our broad application suite combined with BlackBerry's enterprise portfolio and trusted global network will enable us to deliver a unified secure mobility platform spanning the widest array of endpoints – from smartphones, tablets, PCs, wearables through IoT – to power business productivity anytime, anywhere," she wrote.
The BlackBerry-Good Technology deal is the most recent example of consolidation in the MDM market.
Early last year, EMC subsidiary VMware made waves when it announced it was acquiring MDM heavyweight AirWatch for $1.5 billion. A month earlier, IBM announced it had completed the acquisition of Fiberlink, maker of the cloud-based MDM platform MaaS360, for an undisclosed amount.
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.
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