BeyondTrust said today it has acquired Blackbird Group, news which will especially interest those in the Active Directory (AD), systems management, and security spaces.

 beyondtrust booth
BeyondTrust Booth at Windows Connections Conference

BeyondTrust is a provider of Context-Aware Security Intelligence solutions, while Blackbird Group is known for its AD management suite and other AD and auditing products. BeyondTrust says it will leverage the Blackbird product line to drive additional context and awareness around AD and infrastructure components by offering real-time auditing capabilities for both privileged and normal users.

The acquisition continues the shakeup and consolidation in the AD space, and you might recognize previous players resurfacing: “Having previously led NetPro Computing, I understand the importance Active Directory plays within the enterprise,” said Kevin Hickey, president and chief operating officer at BeyondTrust. “We’re excited to continue the development of Blackbird’s product line and provide a solid, seamless integrated management approach to Windows infrastructure.”

“We can really see at a next level being able to bring some significant scale to the operations,” said Christian Ehrenthal, founder and CEO of Blackbird. “For us, our main competitor for the last year has been Quest, whom we’ve been very successfully competing with. It seemed like a very compelling combination to take the BeyondTrust product portfolio that came together after the eEye acquisition and to add the auditing of users within an organization, whether we’re talking Active Directory, Exchange, SQL, file, as well as the data governance component, giving insight on who has access to what.”

In May of this year, BeyondTrust acquired the vulnerability management solution provider eEye Digital Security, where Hickey was CEO after leaving NetPro. The Blackbird acquisition adds to the BeyondTrust product portfolio to unlock the value of AD as the authoritative identity store, and it fulfills the company’s vision of context-aware security intelligence, said BeyondTrust vice president of marketing, Mike Puterbaugh.

“You have to pay the credit where credit is due,” Puterbaugh said. “Blackbird has done an amazing job pursuing Quest, among others, and we think we can help accelerate that. It’s a complementary buy for us, with no overlap in the portfolio. And now that Quest has been acquired by Dell, and depending on where their focus may lie today or what decisions are going to be made about what product lines are continued, we think we have a great opportunity to go and effectively repeat history, if you will.”

Blackbird’s downloadable community tools will continue to be available, he said. For now, Blackbird will operate as a business unit within Beyond Trust, then rebranding will be looked at near the end of the first quarter; the company will maintain all support contracts, he said.

And the company will continue to invest in development. “The development team from Blackbird, they’re down the street from our shop in Halifax [Canada]. A lot of those guys know a lot of the former NetPro guys who are working for BeyondTrust, so there’s a great synergy and fit.” To learn more, see the BeyondTrust website.