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BlackBerry completes £1.1bn Cylance acquisition

BlackBerry has completed its takeover of Californian cyber security firm Cylance in a deal worth $1.4bn (£1.1bn).

The acquisition will help BlackBerry to speed up the development of Spark, its secure communications platform for the internet of things.

Cylance was founded in 2012 by former McAfee chief technology officer Stuart McClure, who remains president of BlackBerry Cylance following the acquisition.

The company specialises in AI-powered antivirus software that aims to preempt malware infections, rather than detecting viruses after they have been downloaded.

“Securing endpoints and the data that flows between them is absolutely critical in today’s hyperconnected world,” said BlackBerry CEO John Chen in a statement.

“By adding Cylance’s technology to our arsenal of cybersecurity solutions we will help enterprises intelligently connect, protect and build secure endpoints that users can trust.”

It’s expected that Cylance will operate as its own unit within BlackBerry, with McClure leading a team of engineers and data scientists who provide services to around 4,000 companies.

Commenting on the takeover, Brian Patridge, research vice president of 451 Research, said: “In this deal BlackBerry obtains advanced security technology that it can deploy within its existing platforms while also providing a complementary fit in terms of market vision and customer focus.”