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Baltimore Divests Another Unit

Paring its focus to authentication products, Baltimore Technologies has agreed to sell its managed security services business to beTRUSTed for $1.75 million in cash. Provided closing conditions are met, the deal should close next month.

The unit provides customers with a platform to issue digital certificates from a secure hosting facility based in Needham Heights, Mass. For customers, its cheaper than building their own facility.

"Baltimore can best exploit the commercial potential of our authentication products through partnering with a dedicated managed security services company," said Bijan Khezri, CEO of the U.K.-based firm.

Khezri feels comfortable tranferring customers, many of whom are in the financial service sector, to beTRUSTed because the companies have had a working relationship since 1999.

For Baltimore, it's the second divestiture of the month. Earlier, it sold its SelectAccess business, which offers Web-based, single sign-on products, to Hewlett-Packard for about $13.2 million in cash.

The sale of parts of the business come after Baltimore said it was no longer looking for a buyer for the entire company. Though it received offer, the company said they did not reflect the value of the company.

John Garvey, CEO of beTRUSTed, said the pickup gives it a broader relationship with Baltimore's clients.

"This move is another step in our plan to become the leading global provider of security and trust services," Garvey said.

The Columbia, Md.-based company took an even bigger step toward that goal earlier this month when it paid $72 million for SecureNet, a Sydney-based managed security company.