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Product Watch: Sophos Sells Majority Interest To Private Equity Firm

Deal with Apax Partners values company at $830 million; founders retain minority shares

IT security firm Sophos today announced a definitive agreement to sell a majority interest in the company to Apax Partners, a global private equity group, in a transaction valuing the company at $830 million.

In its fiscal year ended March 31, Sophos had billings in excess of $330 million (compared with $273 million in FY 2009) and revenue in excess of $260 million.

"Apax's financial backing, combined with Sophos's deep understanding of security and data protection, is great news for our customers, prospects and partners," said Steve Munford, CEO of Sophos. "We are delighted to have the opportunity to back Sophos," said Roy Mackenzie, a partner in the Tech and Telecom team at Apax Partners, in a statement.

Added Salim Nathoo, another Tech and Telecom partner: "We identified the security software space as an attractive investment area for us, given its rapid growth driven by ever-increasing malware threats and high barriers to entry. Apax's strong track record and industry specific knowledge in the technology sector makes Sophos a perfect fit."

Tech & Telecom is one of the five sectors on which Apax Partners focuses exclusively. Alongside Apax Partners, current shareholders will retain significant stakes in the business, including Jan Hruska and Peter Lammer, who co-founded the company in 1985.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Discuss" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message. Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

 

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