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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

IAR buys into IoT security with Secure Thingz

By Nick Flaherty

Development tool maker IAR Systems is to acquire Secure Thingz, a provider of advanced security solutions for embedded systems in the Internet of Things (IoT). This positions IAR as a frontrunner in offering solutions for security in embedded systems.

Secure Thingz is only two years old and develops and sells products and services for implementation of embedded security in connected devices. The company has provided security solutions for the Renesas Synergy Platform, which is very attractive to IAR.
The company's founder Haydn Povey has held senior management roles including marketing and business development at Arm and is an Executive Board Member of the IoT Security Foundation. He will take over as CEO of Secure Thingz under IAR.

Machina Research predicts there will be 27 billion IoT connections in 2025 facing security challenges such as IP theft, counterfeiting and overproduction, as well as data theft and potentially life threatening sabotage. However only 4 percent of the total number of IoT products available are marketed as secure, says ABI Research. This means the total market for secure microcontrollers for IoT can reach 1.2 billion dollars in value in 2022, with secure IoT products representing almost 20 percent of new IoT units. 

The acquisition follows a 10 percent equity stake in Secure Thingz last April, and last month an Embedded Trust product was launched having been developed jointly with IAR. This enables secure development and makes security part of the development workflow, enabling companies to safeguard intellectual property against overproduction and counterfeiting, manage software updates in a robust way, and protect end users from malware intrusion and theft or loss of data. 

"With the increasing number of connected devices, our customers are facing new challenges. One of the major challenges is how to deliver secure products in a world where even minor failures can lead to major consequences," said Stefan Skarin, CEO, IAR Systems. 

"As a first step, our customers need help mainly protecting themselves against overproduction and IP theft, and we are responding to this need with a new offering that provides possibilities to create modern workflow where security is included from start. The acquisition of Secure Thingz is a step in our increased ambition for future growth through new technology, new markets, new business models, and new relationships. It also secures our position as a frontrunner in a changing industry."

"We are very excited to become a part of the highly competent IAR Systems team," said Haydn Povey, founder and incoming CEO of Secure Thingz. "We have already established a smooth cooperation with the development of Embedded Trust, and our combined resources within technology, sales and customer support will enable us to accelerate the development of the innovative security solutions that the digital products market so desperately needs."

He replaces Krishna Anne, the outgoing CEO. "This strategic partnership with IAR Systems will enable Secure Thingz to provide a wide-ranging solution for secure development, secure provisioning, programming, and secure lifecycle management in partnership with the silicon device vendors, market channel partners and programming partners," said Anne.

Completion of the deal is expected in two weeks.

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