Finnish security software company F-Secure has today announced its acquisition of UK-based cyber research and consulting company MWR InfoSecurity.
MWR employs just under 400 staff in the UK, US, South Africa and Singapore, and is forecast to pull in revenues of £27.6 million in its financial year to the end of June - up 28 per cent on last year, but with a pre-tax loss of £400,000.
The acquisition is expected to be completed in early July, with an upfront consideration of £80 million payable by F-Secure to MWR shareholders, and earn-outs of up to £25 million, subject to certain targets being met.
The transaction will be financed from F-Secure's cash reserves and committed bank financing. F-Secure has a bilateral €60 million, five-year financing arrangement with Nordea Bank, comprising a term loan, as well as a revolving credit limit. The upfront payment will be made with a combination of the company's cash assets and €37 million drawn from the term loan.
F-Secure CEO Samu Konttinen cited MWR's threat-hunting platform, called Countercept, as one of the reasons for the acquisition, describing it as "one of the most advanced in the market" and "an excellent complement to our existing technologies".
Together with previous acquisitions in security consulting, he added, F-Secure would have "unparalleled visibility into real-life cyber attacks, 24/7. This enables us to detect indicators across an incredible breadth of attacks".
In addition to the Countercept platform, F-Secure will also add MWR's suite of managed phishing protection services, phishd, to its portfolio.
F-Secure was established under the name Data Fellows by Finns Petri Allas and Risto Siilasmaa in 1988.
It claims to have been the first anti-virus software company to develop heuristic detection, a technology that can block suspected malware based on its activity, rather than an identifying signature. It also claims to be the first to have developed an anti-rootkit technology.
The company became F-Secure in 1999. In recent years, it has also acquired nSense, a Danish company specialising in security consulting, and Italian consultancy Inverse Path, which focused on the avionics, automotive and industry control sectors.
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