As the company continues to change into a more software-focused business, BlackBerry has acquired Encription, a cyber-security consultancy that delivers services globally from a secure location in Worcestershire in the UK.

According to Reuters, the smartphone pioneer sees much potential in security software and services as cyber-security consulting is worth roughly $16.5 billion (£11.8B) per year around the world and is predicted to grow to $23B (£16.5B) per year by 2019.

The acquisition will bring a team of 40 cyber-security pros into the BlackBerry fold to cross-sell some of its own security products, offset the revenue declines from its smartphone sector and kickstart a new consulting business, Professional Cyber-security Services.

BlackBerry says it will cover the following areas in its new consultancy practice:

  • Strategic Security: best practices in IT operations in enterprise mobility management and cloud services.
  • Technical Security: technical assistance for infrastructure and product development
  • Automotive and IoT Security: Rapid commercialisation of IoT solutions makes security and privacy top priorities
  • Detection, Testing and Analysis: threat detection and mitigation penetration testing, vulnerability assessment and incident response analysis

John Chen, executive chairman and CEO of BlackBerry said in a statement: “We recognise that security vulnerabilities are a top risk concern for public and private sector organisations alike. The creation of our Professional Cyber-security Services practice and acquisition of Encription reinforces our commitment to providing customers the industry's most secure mobility solutions and helping them to assess and mitigate risks.”