When it came to Vancouver-based security firm Absolute Software (TSX:ABT), one question has been at the forefront of investor’s minds for some time. Could the company transition its success in the world of laptops into the realm of smaller mobile devices, such as tablets and smartphones?
Today, those same investors are piling into Absolute Software after the company announced a strategic global partnership with Samsung Electronics.
Samsung will embed Absolute Software’s persistence technology into the firmware of Samsung Galaxy mobile devices as a feature of Samsung Knox, which will be launched later this year. Users and corporate administrators will be able to secure their devices remotely from a cloud-based console, and use Absolute Computrace to recover their device if stolen.
Billing itself as a “comprehensive mobile solution for work and play”, Samsung Knox represents the Korean mobile giant’s attempt to challenge incumbent BlackBerry in providing security solutions to enterprise customers. Dr. Injong Rhee, senior vice-president of the technology strategy group at Samsung Electronics, says Absolute’s solutions will help. “As we expand our position in the enterprise market, our customers are demanding enterprise-level security solutions, ” he said. “This is what Samsung Knox and Absolute deliver.”
Absolute CEO John Livingston concurred.
“We are excited to partner with the global mobile industry leader, Samsung, to provide enterprise mobility management and theft protection solutions for their devices,” he said. “With Samsung, the leading provider of smart phones and Android tablets, we are extending Absolute’s patented persistence technology across the full spectrum of smart connected mobile devices.”
Absolute Software sprung to attention midway through the last decade. In 2005, the company teamed up with Lojack to introduce Lojack for Laptops. The product, which worked by periodically dialing Absolute servers and could not be disabled even by wiping the hard drive, was a new level of security for laptops which were, increasingly, becoming a target for thieves.
The success of Lojack for Laptops was a boon to Absolute Software. The company’s revenue climbed from under $37 million in 2007 to more than $74-million in fiscal 2012. Along the way, Absolute made OEM deals with Acer, Dell, Fujitsu, Samsung, Toshiba, Intel and HP. Today, the bulk of the money the company makes is through these deals.
At press time, shares of Absolute Software were up 18.8% to $6.52.