Channel investors, Content, Security Program Controls/Technologies

Mimecast Acquires Email Security, Anti-Phishing Provider MessageControl

Email and data security company Mimecast ($MIME) has acquired eTorch Inc. -- better known as MessageControl, a messaging and e-mail phishing mitigation security provider for Microsoft 365 and more. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

This is M&A deal 309 that MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E have covered so far in 2020.

The deal has potential upside for Mimecast's MSP and MSSP (managed security service provider) partners. Indeed, MessageControl has a partner program for resellers, MSPs and referral providers. The program includes recurring revenue and protected margins for the life of the contract. We're checking to see if or how Mimecast will leverage MessageControl's partner program components.

Mimecast Acquires MessageControl: Email Security Capabilities

MessageControl's flagship product, CodeBreaker, offers these benefits to customers, according to the seller:

"CodeBreaker uses artificial intelligence to reveal the hidden risks of email communications by inserting real-time warnings into anomalous emails. CodeBreaker makes it easy for your employees to identify and thwart human layer attacks including phishing and impersonation."

MessageControl launched in October 2015 as MailControl. At the time, the company raised $1 million in seed funding.

MessageControl holds at least three patents focused on email security and data protection. The patents cover email privacy enforcement, client agnostic email processing and email data collection compliance enforcement, according to the MessageControl website.

Mimecast Acquires MessageControl: Email Security Benefits

Mimecast says the MessageControl deal offers at least three benefits to partners and customers:

1. Machine learning identification of anomalous behaviors. MessageControl’s graph technology can inspect email attributes and content and then apply machine learning to build a library of known and unknown patterns for an individual user. The technology is designed to get smarter over time and has the ability to make real time decisions on 1 billion plus unique user behavior data points, Mimecast says.

2. Contextual, real-time warnings in email. MessageControl provides "intelligent, contextual, and dynamic warnings of potentially untrusted senders or content into emails." the buyer says.

3. The ability to prevent misaddressed email data leaks. Leveraging the graph technology, MessageControl is "built to notify employees before they accidentally send information to the wrong recipients by using historical sending patterns to predict future anomalies." the buyer adds.

Mimecast Acquires MessageControl: Executive Perspectives

Paul Everton, founder and CTO, MessageControl
Peter Bauer, CEO, Mimecast

In a prepared statement about the deal, Mimecast CEO Peter Bauer said:

“MessageControl is a natural complement to Mimecast’s suite of cyber resilience solutions – from email and web security through brand protection, security awareness training, and data protection. Its artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities will offer additional layers of defense by evolving and ‘learning’ the customer environment and user behaviors over time.  We believe this acquisition allows Mimecast to continue to evolve our Email Security 3.0 strategy and provide the best protection for productivity cloud applications like Microsoft 365.”

Added Paul Everton, founder and CTO of MessageControl.

“Mimecast’s portfolio of solutions offers MessageControl the opportunity to expand its reach to protect even more organizations against the advanced threats plaguing the market today. We’re excited to join the Mimecast team as we continue on our mission to stop social engineering and human identity attacks.”

The acquisition of MessageControl is not expected to have a material financial impact to Mimecast’s fiscal 2021 revenue or adjusted EBITDA, the buyer says. That statement suggests the MessageControl buyout was a small, strategic tuck-in deal.

Mimecast Acquires MessageControl: MSP Technology Competition

MSPs have a growing number of email security services from which to choose.

MSP-friendly software and technology companies in the sector include Barracuda MSP, Check Point Software Technologies, Cisco Systems, Mailprotector, Proofpoint, Sophos and VIPRE Security. among many others.

Despite all that competition, Mimecast remains in growth mode. Revenue was $114.2 million in Mimecast's fiscal Q4 of 2020, up 24 percent from Q4 of fiscal 2019. Mimecast disclosed those results on May 11, 2020.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.