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Contributing Writer

Blue Coat Goes Private

Dec 09, 20112 mins
Cisco SystemsData and Information SecurityData Center

Company is in good shape for next phase

Early this morning, I received a press release announcing that Blue Coat Systems was being acquired by private equity firm Thoma Bravo for approximately $1.3 billion. This news didn’t surprise me. Blue Coat recently posted good quarterly revenue numbers and all indications are that its financial and operational woes were in the past. In addition to its financial progress, I believe that Blue Coat is positioned for strong growth over the next few years because:1. It has the right stuff for web security. Blue Coat is a leader here and offers a potpourri of consumption models. You can install ProxySG on your network, go with WebPulse cloud services, or combine the two into a killer hybrid offering. Web security has become a “gotta have” security defense so Blue Coat is well positioned.2. WAN optimization is changing. Yes I know that Riverbed owns WAN optimization but new use cases for video applications and cloud/SaaS connectivity could transform this market. Changing markets and product requirements tend to open doors for alternative vendors and products. 3. Network monitoring is in high demand. As enterprises struggle to understand network usage and traffic patterns, they need better tools for data collection, analysis, and reporting. Packeteer has always been a player here.4. Large organizations are looking for integrated solutions. Blue Coat is already moving in this direction by layering security and visibility into everything it does.I’m not sure what Thoma Bravo plans for Blue Coat but the company already plays in a number of strong markets and offers good products. With the right management and investments, this acquisition should lead to a successful outcome.

Contributing Writer

Jon Oltsik is a distinguished analyst, fellow, and the founder of the ESG’s cybersecurity service. With over 35 years of technology industry experience, Jon is widely recognized as an expert in all aspects of cybersecurity and is often called upon to help customers understand a CISO's perspective and strategies. Jon focuses on areas such as cyber-risk management, security operations, and all things related to CISOs.

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