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BlackBerry Buys Rival Good Technology in MDM Consolidation

**Editor’s Note: Please click here for a recap of the biggest channel-impacting mergers in July-August 2015.**

Partners in Good Technology’s channel program could be affected by BlackBerry’s plans to buy the mobile-device management (MDM) provider. How, to this point, is yet to be determined.

BlackBerry announced an agreement Friday to purchase its competitor for $425 million. Executives from both companies say the acquisition will create the most comprehensive mobile security platform in the industry and further BlackBerry’s goal of having cross-platform capabilities.

“By acquiring Good, BlackBerry will better solve one of the biggest struggles for CIOs today, especially those in regulated industries: securely managing devices across any platform,” said BlackBerry CEO John Chen.

One of the factors making security a major concern for BlackBerry is the large number of government clients it serves. As of January 2014, BlackBerry was a mobility partner with 16 of the world’s G-20 governments.

Good Technology maintains a Level 4 certification on the Common Criteria Evaluation for mobile collaboration on iOS and Android. That’s higher than anyone else in the mobile security category, according to the company.

Good CEO Christy Wyatt said her company would also help BlackBerry expand its Internet of Things capabilities.

BlackBerry media officials declined to comment on channel-specific questions.

The acquirer said it expects $160 million revenue from Good’s first year. The transaction is expected to close by the end of the fiscal year’s third quarter – which is November 28. Regulatory approval is pending.

A BlackBerry Q&A blog with Wyatt and COO Marty Beard discusses the past relationship between the BlackBerry and Good Technology as well as the future collaboration.

“Overall, our secure mobility platform and application suite is highly complementary to BlackBerry’s end-to-end solution for mobile device management for BlackBerry 10, iOS and Android including both Samsung KNOX- and Android for Work-enabled devices,” Wyatt said in the blog post.

The marriage between the two companies is a surprise for some, as the former rivals in MDM have butted heads other over the years. BlackBerry took umbrage to the fact that Good and other MDM companies were promoting BlackBerry’s migration plans. BlackBerry called out those companies and even challenged a Good Technology press release in January.

But as one might paraphrase BlackBerry executives, all is fair in love and war.

“Some people may not realize it, but BlackBerry and Good have both been delivering secure mobility for more than a decade,” Marty Beard said in the blog post. “Our industry is very competitive and is constantly evolving, so it’s not surprising that we’ve each taken some aggressive positions over the years.”


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