Dropbox is in full acquisition mode; Tuesday it bought startup MobileSpan, a company that helps employees access corporate firewalled content from their personal devices in a secure manner.
According to the MobileSpan website, the company will shut down at the end of 2014, and active development will cease immediately.
MobileSpan said, “We will cease active development on MobileSpan to focus our energies and expertise on Dropbox for Business. Existing customers can continue to use the product until Dec 31st 2014. We’ll help any individual customers who would like to transition to Dropbox for Business.”
Dropbox made the acquisition to speed up its move to make Dropbox For Business more attractive and secure when it comes to the needs of large enterprise entities. Previous work MobileSpan has done in that area makes the task easier for Dropbox.
Dropbox told TechCrunch that all four MobileSpan team members would join Dropbox, bringing both MobileSpan technology and talent to the Dropbox organization. This acquisition follows Dropbox’s DropTalk buy last week and provides further evidence the company has decided to build up its product via outright purchase versus the slower R&D route.
The combination of Dropbox technology and experience along with the unique approach to BYOD offered by MobileSpan should speed up access to a large variety of devices, no matter the manufacturer or operating system.
Others seeking entry in the BYOD space include Box, Microsoft MSFT and Google GOOGGOOGL. To that end, Dropbox has been waging a “come from behind” battle in this war – based on the notion the company was seen as more consumer oriented than enterprise focused.
One advantage Dropbox has is its appeal to enterprise employees. Workers like Dropbox and want to use it. Many do, to the chagrin of nervous CIOs.
Dropbox head of product, mobile and business, Ilya Fushman, told TechCrunch, “Ultimately, most CIOs I talk to, the response isn’t ‘I’m scared of Dropbox.’ It’s ‘People like Dropbox, I want to give it to them. You need to build this and this and this to make it more comfortable for us.’”
Dropbox, in acquiring companies like MobileSpan, has heard that message loud and clear and is working to become as trusted and secure as its big name competition.
At the time of this writing, Jim Probasco had no position in any mentioned securities.
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