Sophos in $830m deal with Apax

Deal made

IT security firm Sophos is to sell a majority interest in the company to private equity group Apax Partners, in a deal that values the firm at $830 million (544 million).

The founders of the data protection company, Dr Jan Hruska and Dr Peter Lammer, will still keep a minority shareholding. TA Associates, a private equity investment firm, which has had a minority shareholder in Sophos since 2002, is to sell its full interest to Apax.

Sophos employs a number of experts in the IT security industry, with senior technology consultant Graham Cluley being one of them.

He told IT PRO that the senior management team will remain the same and the acquisition will not change what he does. It will be "business as usual" for the expert, with threats still out there to be reported on.

In a statement, chief executive officer of Sophos Steve Munford said: "Apax's financial backing, combined with Sophos's deep understanding of security and data protection is great news for our customers, prospects, partners. It is also a testament to the efforts of all those who helped bring Sophos to where it is today."

Salim Nathoo, a partner in the tech and telecom team at Apax Partners, also talked up the synergy between the two companies: "Sophos is a very strong platform and is gaining market share. Apax's strong track record and industry specific knowledge in the technology sector makes Sophos a perfect fit, and we look forward to working closely with this high-growth business going forward," he said.

Apax works in five different sectors, with telecoms and technology being just one of them. Its other areas of interest include retail and consumer, media, healthcare, and financial and business services.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.