NTT Security is aiming to help its customers "see the wood from the trees" on emerging cybersecurity technologies with the launch of an incubator scheme.
With help from a small handful of customers willing to act as guinea pigs, NTT Security is currently testing and evaluating technology from six cyberdefence, eight advanced end-point and five intelligence and context start-ups, many of which are direct competitors.
"With 5,000 security start-ups out there, it's difficult for customers to decide which to invest in," said Dave Polton, chief technology architect at NTT Security.
"The market was demanding this approach. We need to help our customers see the wood from the trees."
Cylance, an artificial intelligence-based end-point security vendor which recently bagged $100m (£76m) in venture capital (VC) funding, is the first to graduate from the scheme, and Polton anticipated that five others will make the grade.
"We're deliberately instilling competition in them, as we are asking them to prove they can work with us," Polton said.
The amount of VC cash scored may be one yardstick by which to judge a start-up, but Polton said NTT Security is also putting emphasis on the track record of the VC, as well as whether the technology works in the real world, and its channel model.
It was originally in talks with 45 vendors before whittling that number down.
"When we were Integralis, we were easier to go to market with for new technologies," he said. "As we made the move from being a reseller to a security SI, our messaging changed and we'd front everything with our own capabilities and go-to-market. Taking new vendors' messaging to market didn't sit with that."
Jon Busfield, managing director of security VAR Cygnia, said his firm is also open to taking on emerging security start-ups.
"We are continually looking at new technologies and recently signed LightCyber. At the moment, we are looking at lots of end-point and forensics technologies," he said.
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