The ongoing shift of emphasis in the cyber security industry from defensive, reactive actions towards pro-active detection and response has fueled veteran Finnish security company F-Secure’s acquisition of MWR InfoSecurity, announced today.
F-Secure is paying £80 million (€91,6M) in cash to purchase all outstanding shares in MWR InfoSecurity, funding the transaction with its own cash reserves and a five-year bank loan. In addition, the terms include an earn-out of a maximum of £25M (€28,6M) in cash to be paid after 18 months of the completion subject to the achievement of agreed business targets for the period from 1 July, 2018, until 31 December, 2019.
F-Secure says the acquisition will enable it to offer its customers access to the more offensive skillsets needed to combat targeted attacks — specialist capabilities that most companies are not likely to have in-house.
It points to detection and response solutions (EDR) and managed detection and response services (MDR) as one of the fastest growing market segments in the security space. And says the acquisition makes it the largest European single source of cyber security services and detection and response solutions, positioning it to cater to both mid-market companies and large enterprises globally.
“The acquisition brings MWR InfoSecurity’s industry-renowned technologies to F-Secure making our detection and response offering unrivaled,” said F-Secure CEO Samu Konttinen in a statement. “Their threat hunting platform (Countercept) is one of the most advanced in the market and is an excellent complement to our existing technologies.”
As well as having experts in-house skilled in offensive techniques, MWR InfoSecurity — a UK company that was founded in 2002 — is well known for its technical expertise and research.
And F-Secure says it expects learnings from major incident investigations and targeted attack simulations to provide insights that can be fed directly back into product creation, as well as be used to upgrade its offerings to reflect the latest security threats.
MWR InfoSecurity also has a suite of managed phishing protection services (phishd) which F-Secure also says will also enhance its offering.
The acquisition is expected to close in early July, and will add around 400 employees to F-Secure’s headcount. MWR InfoSecurity’s main offices are located in the UK, the US, South Africa and Singapore.
“I’m thrilled to welcome MWR InfoSecurity’s employees to F-Secure. With their vast experience and hundreds of experts performing cyber security services on four continents, we will have unparalleled visibility into real-life cyber attacks 24/7,” added Konttinen. “This enables us to detect indicators across an incredible breadth of attacks so we can protect our customers effectively. As most companies currently lack these capabilities, this represents a significant opportunity to accelerate F-Secure’s growth.”
“We’ve always relied on research-driven innovations executed by the best people and technology. This approach has earned MWR InfoSecurity the trust of some of the largest organizations in the world,” added MWR InfoSecurity CEO, Ian Shaw, who will be joining F-Secure’s leadership team after the transaction closes. “We see this approach thriving at F-Secure, and we look forward to working together so that we can break new ground in the cyber security industry.”
The companies will be holding a webcast to provide more detail on the news for investors and analysts later today, at 13:30 EEST.