Intel weighs sale of cyber security business
NEW YORK—Intel is looking at options for Intel Security, including potentially selling the antivirus software maker formerly known as McAfee which it bought for $7.7bn almost six years ago.
The Silicon Valley chipmaker has been talking to bankers about the future of its cyber security unit in a deal that would be one of the largest in the sector, according to people close to the discussions.
Private equity buyers are increasingly interested in cyber security companies, anticipating strong cash flow as corporate customers become increasingly worried about protecting their business from cyber attacks. A group of PE firms might club together to buy Intel Security if it is sold for the same price or higher than the $7.7bn Intel originally paid for it.
Earlier this month, Bain Capital sold Blue Coat Security to Symantec for almost twice what it paid the cyber defence company last year. Vista Equity Partners also bought Ping Identity, an authentication service, which had been planning an initial public offering at the start of June.
Venture capital flooded into the highly fragmented cyber security industry in 2014 and 2015, as the old stalwarts appeared unable to protect against newer, more sophisticated attacks.—Agencies