Thursday, 27 November 2008

NCC beefs up security testing

(By Anthony Miller) Escrow, security and testing specialists NCC Group has snapped up UK-based security software player, NGSS (Next Generation Security Software) for a max. £10m all cash deal. NCC CEO Rob Colton also confirmed first-half trading remains in line with their 16th October update.

Manchester-based NCC is a very interesting little company. If I recall correctly (as there’s no company history on their website, hint, hint) they were spun out from the UK National Computing Centre a few years back and have since built a successful niche in software escrow (is this unique – I can’t think offhand of any other independent players in this space?) and security testing. Last year (to May ’08) the company turned over £36m at 26% margins and has been making a few acquisitions. NCC is currently valued around £100m, having lost about 25% of its value this year.

For those investors looking for a proxy for NCC, just take a peek at Germany-based but London listed software testing player, SQS, whose stock performance is spookily close to NCC (see chart – NCC is blue, SQS in red). I have written many times before that testing is a great place to be and, in theory at least, security testing should be even better.

No comments: