Local agent okays new takeover of mail security firm

The local agent for a UK security and content control firm says another impending takeover can only be good for the company.

The local agent for a UK security and content control firm says another impending takeover can only be good for the company.

The British company Content Technologies looks about to be acquired from Irish firm Baltimore Technologies for about $US30m by the Clearswift Corporation, also based in Britain and in the business of email security and content control. Content Technologies, with its MimeSweeper range of products, cover these areas as well as web security.

Content Technologies’ long-standing New Zealand agent, Scientific Software and Systems of Lower Hutt, sees the potential acquisition, yet to be approved by an extraordinary general meeting of Baltimore shareholders, as involving little change in distribution channels, minimal shakeout in the products and probably an expansion of the range.

In terms of the channel, Clearswift has no appreciable presence in the Asia-Pacific region, says SSS managing director Bill Tonkin. So there is no change likely in that respect. Content Technologies Asia-Pacific director Chy Chuawaiwat has indicated as much to him. “We expect to be talking to the same people, with the same philosophies as we have been [under Baltimore],” Tonkin says.

However, as far as the products go, “our analysis indicates that MimeSweeper is significantly superior to the Clearswift offering in the Windows NT/2000 SMTP [email] environment”, says Tonkin. Clearswift has no equivalent of Content Technologies’ WebSweeper or secure S-Mime SecretSweeper product, he says.

On the other hand, Clearswift also operates in the Unix/Linux space, where Content Technologies products do not. There is a significant New Zealand demand for a Unix or Linux version of the MimeSweeper products, Tonkin says.

In the area of overlap, Clearswift has a strong GUI for easily defining content management policies, but the Content Technologies content-checking engine is stronger, Tonkin says. So it would be reasonable to expect a beneficial combination of the two in due course.

Content Technologies sprang originally from a subsidiary of a British company Integralis, before being taken over by Baltimore in the late 90s. SSS has stuck with the company through its incarnations, and the relationship looks like surviving the latest change.

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