US connected car systems company Harman International Industries Inc. (NYSE: HAR) has acquired Israeli automotive cyber security company TowerSec. No financial details about the deal were disclosed but market sources believe that Harman is paying $70-75 million. Headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Internet-of-Things company TowerSec has its development center in Kfar Saba.
TowerSec, founded in 2012, specializes in network protection for connected vehicles and its systems will be integrated into Harman’s 5+1 security architecture aimed at protecting the critical points of vulnerability in the connected and autonomous car, including hardware, network and Over The Air (OTA) updates.
According to IVC, the company has 20 employees and raised only $2.5 million to date from IncWell Fund and private investors. The Startup's three founders - CEO Saar Dickman, chief cyber security officer Guy Ruvio, and CTO Yuval Weisglass, will rake in $45 million from the sale.
Harman chairman, president and CEO Dinesh Paliwal said, “The demand for connected - and eventually autonomous - cars is accelerating quickly with OEMs and consumers understanding the enormous benefits that cloud, data and analytics produce for enhanced safety, productivity and entertainment. At the same time, we cannot sacrifice security for functionality. By acquiring TowerSec’s best-in-class suite of network protection software and gaining the expertise of their highly experienced security engineers, we will build on HARMAN’s 5+1 security framework, already the most comprehensive in the industry, and ensure that we remain one step ahead to protect existing and future connected systems.”
TowerSec has developed real-time, embedded software security products to protect vehicles from hacking and intrusions.
Dickman said, “The TowerSec team has developed innovative, essential and efficient security measures for OEMs and suppliers. While we have been partnering with Harman as a supplier, now we will leverage the company’s scale, network and deep connected car domain experience to meet the demands of our target markets, including providers of gateways, body control modules, and TCU's, as well as automotive OEMs and other Tier 1 suppliers. We are excited to work within HARMAN to ensure cars on the road today and those designed for tomorrow are protected against cyber attacks and other intrusions."
This is Harman's second Israeli acquisition. Last January, the US company acquired Red Bend Software from Hod Hasharon for $200 million. Red Bend has developed software systems for cars.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 6, 2016
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