SecureWorks and Lurhq announced a merger today, confirming rumors heard earlier in the week. (See SecureWorks-Lurhq to Merge?) The companies will play in the fast growing market for managed security services, but officials say the merger isn't a response to IBM's recent buyout of ISS. (See IBM Merger Gets Mixed Responses and IBM Up-Ends Security Services Market.)
"In no way does it have anything to do with IBM-ISS," says Tony Prince, founder and CEO of Lurhq and now executive vice president of the new SecureWorks, a $35 million managed security services provider with 1,500 clients and managing 5,000 security devices worldwide. "In our opinion, this is bigger and better. We are focused on being a leader in the managed services market."
Mike Cote, president and CEO of SecureWorks, who will serve in the same capacity at the combined company, concurred. Cote says most of the 25 SecureWorks customers he contacted yesterday about the merger wanted more information on the new services the merged company will provide. "We were looking for an expansion of this service, which is one of the reasons I gave Tony a call." The two companies had been crossing paths for nearly three years and were already well-acquainted, he says.
Bill Sutphin, assistant vice president and network security officer for Home Federal Bank of Tennessee, which uses services from both vendors, had suggested that the two companies team up in some way, Cote says. "He's been pushing us to do this for the past year or so."
Sutphin says the merger means the bank will no longer have to act as an integrator between the two services, and he likes the idea of dealing with one management team. "This combined entity will move that organization to the short list of anyone interested in managed security services."
But all of this doesn't mean IBM-ISS isn't on SecureWorks' radar: Prince says SecureWorks' main competitors on the enterprise side are Symantec, VeriSign, and "now IBM." On the commercial side, it will be local telcos and other service providers, he says.
The merger pairs SecureWorks' network intrusion prevention for the outside of the network and Lurhq's internal network monitoring for protecting against the internal threat. This year, the two sets of tools and portals will share and correlate data, Prince says. "We're going to focus on quality and delivery of good service and integrating the solutions together."
And later next year, the company will look at the possibility of more acquisitions, international expansion, and more product lines, Cote says.
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Senior Editor, Dark Reading