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SymantecSymantec has announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire cloud security specialists Blue Coat for $4.65 billion.

Blue coat is generally accepted as the market share leader and share gainer in web security and the deal is expected to close in Q3 this year. For the year ending April 2016, Blue Coat reported revenues of $598 million, demonstrating 17% year-on-year growth, accounting for 15,000 customers worldwide.

The company’s current CEO Greg Clark will be confirmed as Symantec’s new CEO and board member upon closing of the transaction. The move to appoint Clark as the company’s new CEO may indicate a shift in strategic direction for the business, as Symantec could be viewed as one of the technology industry’s old guard.

“Today, Symantec keeps global enterprises, governments and individual consumers protected with solutions across threat protection, information protection and managed services,” said Clark. “Likewise, Blue Coat is the trusted source for protecting billions of web transactions daily and is the clear leader in the growing cloud security market. Once combined, we will offer customers around the world – from large enterprises and governments to individual consumers – unrivalled threat protection and unmatched cloud security.”

Symantec has stated it will incorporate Blue Coat capabilities to ‘define the future of cybersecurity and set the pace for innovation industrywide’. R&D investments will focus around 3,000 engineers and nine Threat Response Centres in various locations around the world.

As part of the agreement, Silver Lake has agreed to make an additional investment of $500 million, taking its total investment to $1 billion. Bain Capital has also agreed to invest an additional $750 million in the company, as well as adding David Humphrey, a Managing Director of Bain Capital Private Equity, to Symantec’s Board of Directors.

“With this transaction, we will have the scale, portfolio and resources necessary to usher in a new era of innovation designed to help protect large customers and individual consumers against insider threats and sophisticated cybercriminals,” said Dan Schulman, Chairman of Symantec. “Together, we will be best positioned to address the ever-evolving threat landscape, the massive changes introduced by the shift to mobile and cloud, and the challenges created by regulatory and privacy concerns.”

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