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McAfee completes Stonesoft acquisition

Warwick Ashford

Intel-owned McAfee has completed its acquisition of Finnish firewall company Stonesoft in a $389m deal announced in May.

With the completion of the deal, all Stonesoft products and technologies are now part of the McAfee portfolio, but existing roadmaps for those products will be honoured, Stonesoft said.

Through its acquisition of Stonesoft, McAfee said it plans to extend its leadership position in network security.

Stonesoft’s firewall technology rounds out McAfee’s network portfolio of its IPS Network Security Platform and Firewall Enterprise for the high-assurance market segment.

“This acquisition provides McAfee with a clear competitive advantage in the network security space,” said Michael DeCesare, president of McAfee.

The enterprise network security equipment market is forecast to grow at a 7% compound annual growth rate during the next five years and reach $11.4bn by 2017, according to Gartner.

“With the addition of one of the industry’s best next-generation firewalls, we now have one of the most complete and effective network security portfolios in the industry,” said DeCesare.

The acquisition of Stonesoft’s technology will also help McAfee capitalise on the global next-generation firewall market, according to Ashish Patel, Stonesoft’s UK-based regional director.

“That market alone is expected to grow from $500m in 2012 to 4.6bn in 2016,” he told Computer Weekly. 

The Helsinki-based Stonesoft team will become a part of the Network Security Business Unit, led by Pat Calhoun. All technical and commercial teams will continue working where they are, said Patel.

“McAfee’s Security Connected strategy brings together industry-leading solutions to address the increasing number of advanced threats facing businesses from the network to the cloud,” said Ilkka Hiidenheimo, founder and chief executive officer of Stonesoft.

“With innovative technology that can be deployed as an appliance, as software or virtually, McAfee’s customers will be positioned to meet the high-performance needs of demanding, secure, distributed networks today and in the future,” he said.

When the deal was announced, DeCesare said he planned to integrate Stonesoft’s offerings with other McAfee products to help support McAfee’s Security Connected strategy.

In particular, Stonesoft’s research into advanced evasion techniques will provide protection against new and emerging threats.

In turn, McAfee’s expertise and cloud-based Global Threat Intelligence (GTI) service will give combined customers “unparalleled security”, he said.

Patel said the GTI capability is one of McAfee’s core strengths and will be one of the technologies that will be added to Stonesoft’s portfolio to take its products ahead by “leaps and bounds”.

Stonesoft will also benefit from the strong brands of both Intel and McAfee, long-term financial stability and investment and extended global channel, technical and sales support.


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