Silent Circle Buys Geeksphone Out Of Blackphone Joint-Enterprise
Encrypted comms firm Silent Circle, one half of the SGP Applied sciences three way partnership behind the professional-privateness Android smartphone Blackphone, has simply introduced it’s reached an settlement to purchase out its hardware associate, Spanish smartphone maker Geeksphone.
It’s anticipating to shut the purchase out this week. Silent Circle’s acquisition of the JV will end in it taking a one hundred% possession stake in SGP Applied sciences and the Blackphone product set. It says the purchase out will deliver “operation efficiencies” and “an built-in product roadmap”.
In a press launch put out as we speak, Silent Circle additionally reveals it has raised $50 million to gasoline its subsequent spherical of progress — because it positions itself to focus extra absolutely on the enterprise. It’s not clear if that is all new financing however we’ve requested for readability and can replace this publish as soon as we all know.
It provides that will probably be unveiling an “enterprise privateness ecosystem”, utilizing ZRTP cryptographic protocols, on the Cellular World Congress commerce present subsequent week, to additional flesh out its enterprise technique.
Silent Circle’s clear goal right here is to step into the hole left by the marketshare demise of BlackBerry and woo enterprise customers with an built-in suite of safe enterprise communication merchandise that higher meshes with the realities of a consumerized ‘convey your personal system’ enterprise world. So principally the pitch is encrypted comms operating on trendy and succesful cellular hardware. (The corporate has beforehand confirmed a Blackphone pill can also be incoming.)
In Might final yr Silent Circle took in its first ever exterior funding, a $30 million spherical, because of demand for Blackphone. So its buyers are additionally evidently persuaded there’s a large alternative to capitalize on BlackBerry’s fall.
Add to that, there’s usually momentum for safer cellular communications, as safety continues to stand up company agendas within the wake of excessive profile leaks such because the hacking of Sony Footage’ e-mail final yr.
Simply final week it emerged that authorities intelligence businesses may need cracked encryption keys in SIM playing cards distributed by Gemalto — in accordance with paperwork launched by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden — blowing an enormous safety gap in cellular voice communications.
Commenting in a press release, Silent Circle investor, Ross Perot Jr, flagged up these numerous rising safety considerations. “As the character and quantity of knowledge breaches improve, institutional belief is eroding,” he stated. “There are corporations which were hacked and there are people who don’t find out about it but, which signifies that safety within the conventional sense has failed us. With the variety of staff connecting to an enterprises’ community utilizing their very own units quickly rising, organizations want a unique answer.
“Briefly, in a publish-Sony and Gemalto world, safety breaches have been made each enterprise and private so it’s not a problem affecting simply the boardroom.”
“This primary stage of progress has enabled us to boost roughly $50m to speed up our continued speedy enlargement and gasoline our second stage of progress,” added Mike Janke, co-Founder and government chairman of the Silent Circle Board, in one other assertion.
“Slightly below a yr in the past, we launched Blackphone at Cellular World Congress. Since then, we’ve continued to develop new, privateness-first merchandise for our built-in software program suite in addition to Blackphone, the primary hardware system in our portfolio of privateness options.”