AVG, one of the largest American PC anti virus software makers with 110 million subscribers worldwide, has acquired Israeli startup DroidSecurity, maker of anti virus software for Android phones, for an estimated amount of $4.1 million (plus $5.3 million in earn out payments based on performance milestones, bringing the total sum up to $9.4 million). DroidSecurity is a popular free anti virus app for Android phones, which has been downloaded 4.5 million times since it launched earlier this year. Following the acquisition, DroidSecurity will become a wholly-owned subsidiary and remain headquartered in Tel Aviv. DroidSecurity’s CEO Eran Pfeffer (formerly a co-founder and VP business development of BmyPC) will become AVG’s head of mobile solutions.
Consistently ranked one of the top 50 free apps on the Android marketplace, this question from the DroidSecurity’s help page may explain why:
Q: Can my phone really get viruses?
A: Absolutely! Android is an operating system for mobile phones and like any other computing device can be infected with a virus or malware. You can visit our Security Center to see what kind of threats we defend you from on a daily basis.
The investors in DroidSecurity include Maayan Ventures (owned 39% for an investment of $100,000 + $500,000 from a grant by the Chief Scientist Offfice) and a group of private investors led by Shachar Efal, a partner in Quantumwave Capital (20%). According to Globes, Maayan Ventures made $2.2 million out of the exits, of which $800,000 will be paid back to the chief scientist office.
In the official announcement, J.R. Smith, chief executive officer, AVG said:
“The potential that exists within the mobile space is extraordinary, and we predict that devices like smart phones will overtake PCs in 2012. AVG acquired DroidSecurity to accelerate our delivery of sophisticated mobile security and provide users around the world with the reliable and secure technology they need to confidently mitigate the risks associated with using mobile devices.”
DroidSecurity was founded in 2009 by Eran Pfeffer, CTO Dror Shalev, and VP marketing Omri Sigelman. It has five employees in Israel.