Belfast Telegraph

Expansion on the cards after Black Duck is taken over in a £432m deal

By Mark Edwards

A US cybersecurity firm with 30 employees in Belfast is set to expand after being taken over in a $565m (£432m) deal.

Black Duck Software, which opened here last year, is being sold to US tech firm Synopsys in a deal which is expected to close next month.

Black Duck chief executive Lou Shipley said all employees based in Belfast will be retained and that the firm planned to continue increasing the number of jobs here.

Mr Shipley, speaking from the company's Belfast office in Donegall Square West, said: "The first thing after we announced to our US employees yesterday was to jump on a plane and come over and talk to our employees here.

"The investment we have made here in open source security research is really strategic to the company.

"We will continue to invest heavily and expect to grow jobs here, not reduce them at all." The Belfast Telegraph understands Black Duck's Belfast employees were told of the takeover last Friday afternoon.

Invest NI put £377,000 into Black Duck when the firm opened here last October with a view to creating nearly 60 new tech jobs in Belfast.

Mr Shipley said: "When we originally signed up with Invest NI it was to create 58 jobs.

"We are up to 30 now, and we are continuing to grow.

"We will see further expansion in 2018. The acquisition by Synopsys is not expected to close for maybe 35 or 45 days and then we will do full resource planning and budgeting for 2018/19.

"We will then have a better handle on the exact number of jobs after we go through that budgeting process."

Black Duck helps companies manage their use of open source software.

The company is projected to contribute around $60m (£46m) to Synopsys' fiscal revenue in 2018.

Mr Shipley added: "It gives our company the opportunity to grow and to be part of an even larger company. So it is really good for employees over all and it is very good news for Belfast. We are really happy with what we have done here."

A spokesman for Invest NI said: "We have worked closely with Black Duck Software to secure its initial investment in Northern Ireland.

"We look forward to continuing this relationship with Synopsys Inc. and to explore opportunities for the further development of its Belfast operation. This will enhance the reputation of Belfast as the leading destination city globally for US FDI cyber security projects."

Belfast Telegraph

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