Telefonica, S.A.’s (TEF - Free Report) cyber arm, ElevenPaths, has acquired iHackLabs to boost the training of cybersecurity specialists amid evolving cyber threat scenarios. The edtech company is widely known for its diverse range of virtual laboratories in forensic and defense sectors. Apart from strengthening Telefonica’s foothold in the security consulting services, the buyout highlights its foray into the cybersecurity training market while emerging as a trusted security partner for its customers.
Headquartered in the United Kingdom, iHackLabs is a startup company that specializes in recruiting and training the millennial generation with best-in-class cybersecurity experience. The company provides technical trainings through cloud-based training platforms. As a well-known expert in cyber consulting solutions, iHackLabs’ training programs have been designed to enable the next-gen workforce to get accustomed to dynamic threat situations across multiple sectors.
Interestingly, Telefonica’s ElevenPaths and iHackLabs’ relationship dates back to 2018. The partnership solidified when Telefonica advised Wayra to invest in the U.K.-based startup. Wayra is a Telefonica initiative that promotes innovations of various entrepreneurs with a portfolio of more than 400 startups. Given the accretive demand for cybersecurity services, it is estimated that there will be more than 300,000 vacancies for professional experts by 2022 in the European Union. In light of this, the iHackLabs acquisition is likely to stimulate Telefonica’s commitment to educate customers with state-of-the-art cybersecurity knowledge.
A few days ago, ElevenPaths acquired Govertis to strengthen its foothold in the security and regulatory compliance across global markets. Telefonica also bolstered its IoT security by fortifying its relationship with cybersecurity services provider — Nozomi Networks. The investment enhanced operational reliability by providing best-in-class protection to critical assets. It is worth mentioning that the iHackLabs buyout is considered a vital step for nurturing the skills of cyber security professionals. Consequently, this addition of computer security specialists will help Telefonica to augment its training services, both in the public and private sectors.
Telefonica provides a comprehensive suite of service platforms for fast go-to-market launches. Its IoT connectivity platform has been designed to address dynamic business requirements and enable a cost-effective solution to improve business productivity. Over the past years, it has invested heavily in the deployment and transformation of its network to provide seamless connectivity with enhanced capacity, speed, coverage and security. With operations across 17 countries, the Spanish telecom company is capitalizing on the opportunities in the digital world through several growth strategies to enhance long-term prospects, while experiencing healthy traction in the smartphone market.
Telefonica currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). The company’s shares have plunged 46.4% compared with the industry’s decline of 18.9% in the past year.
Some better-ranked stocks in the broader industry are Deutsche Telekom AG (DTEGY - Free Report) , Shenandoah Telecommunications Company (SHEN - Free Report) and MYR Group Inc. (MYRG - Free Report) , each sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Deutsche Telekom has a long-term earnings growth expectation of 10%.
Shenandoah delivered a trailing four-quarter positive earnings surprise of 10.2%, on average.
MYR Group delivered a trailing four-quarter positive earnings surprise of 33.1%, on average.
The Hottest Tech Mega-Trend of All
Last year, it generated $24 billion in global revenues. By 2020, it's predicted to blast through the roof to $77.6 billion. Famed investor Mark Cuban says it will produce "the world's first trillionaires," but that should still leave plenty of money for regular investors who make the right trades early.
See Zacks' 3 Best Stocks to Play This Trend >>