Thoma Bravo makes $3.9 billion bid to acquire Sophos

A person at a desk strewn with papers signing a document next to an open laptop

US private equity firm Thoma Bravo has moved to snap-up cloud-enabled cybersecurity firm Sophos in an acquisition worth $3.9 billion.

Based on a price of $7.40 per share, the British-based company’s board of directors have announced their intention to unanimously recommend the offer to its shareholders.

With a focus on the software and technology-enabled services sector, Thoma Bravo boasts more than $35 billion in investor commitments and has acquired upwards of 200 software and tech firms worth more than $50 billion in combined value.

In recent years, the private equity firm has added a number of cybersecurity businesses to its portfolio – including Sophos’ market rival Barracuda back in 2017, as well as Imperva, LogRhytm and Veracode.

In a public filing, Thoma Bravo described Sophos as a “global leader in next-generation cybersecurity” thanks to its portfolio of solutions spanning endpoint, next-generation firewall, cloud security, server security, as well as managed threat response. The acquisition also represents “an attractive opportunity” to increase exposure to the “large and growing” cybersecurity market, the group added.

To date, Sophos has accumulated more than 400,000 customers across 150 countries, with over 47,000 channel partners and more than 100 million users of its solutions.

The company’s board said Thoma Bravo’s “compelling” bid will enable it to “accelerate its evolution and leadership in next-generation cybersecurity”.

It also welcomed confirmation that the takeover will not involve any material restructuring or changes in location of the firm’s Abingdon, UK headquarters, operations or places of business.

“Today marks an exciting milestone in the ongoing journey of Sophos,” said Sophos CEO Kris Hagerman. “Sophos is actively driving the transition in next-generation cybersecurity solutions, leveraging advanced capabilities in cloud, machine learning, APIs, automation, managed threat response, and more.

“We continue to execute a highly-effective and differentiated strategy, and we see this offer as a compelling validation of Sophos, its position in the industry and its progress.”

The acquisition is expected to be completed during the first quarter of 2020, subject to receipt of the relevant competition clearances and regulatory approvals.

Daniel Todd

Dan is a freelance writer and regular contributor to ChannelPro, covering the latest news stories across the IT, technology, and channel landscapes. Topics regularly cover cloud technologies, cyber security, software and operating system guides, and the latest mergers and acquisitions.

A journalism graduate from Leeds Beckett University, he combines a passion for the written word with a keen interest in the latest technology and its influence in an increasingly connected world.

He started writing for ChannelPro back in 2016, focusing on a mixture of news and technology guides, before becoming a regular contributor to ITPro. Elsewhere, he has previously written news and features across a range of other topics, including sport, music, and general news.