Avast Software Acquires AVG Technologies For $1.3Bn
Avast Software has announced the acquisition of its biggest rival in the security space-AVG Technologies. As per the agreement, Avast will offer to purchase all of the outstanding ordinary shares of AVG for $25.00 per share in cash, for a total consideration of approximately $1.3B. Both companies are industry pioneers founded in the Czech Republic in the late 1980s and early 1990s, that expanded internationally in the 2000s, and now will be combining complementary strengths to position Avast for continued growth in the security industry.
Avast is pursuing this acquisition to gain scale, technological depth and geographical breadth so that the new organization can be in a position to take advantage of emerging growth opportunities in Internet Security as well as organizational efficiencies. The technological depth and geographical reach will help Avast serve customers with more advanced security offerings in the core business and new innovations in emerging markets, such as security for IoT devices.
Combining Avast’s and AVG’s users, the organization will have a network of more than 400 million endpoints, of which 160 million are mobile, that act as de facto sensors, providing information about malware to help detect and neutralize new threats as soon as they appear. This increase in scale will enable Avast to create more technically advanced personal security and privacy products.
The security market is seems to be consolidating with major security solution providers acquiring their rivals. Earlier in June, Symantec announced acquisition of Blue Coat for $4.65 billion. Similarly, Intel is reportedly, looking at options including selling Intel Security, the antivirus software maker formerly known as McAfee that it bought for about $7.7bn almost six years ago.
The transaction has been unanimously approved by the Management Board and Supervisory Board of Avast. The Management Board and Supervisory Board of AVG approved and support the transaction and recommend the offer for acceptance to the AVG shareholders.
“We are in a rapidly changing industry, and this acquisition gives us the breadth and technological depth to be the security provider of choice for our current and future customers,” said Vince Steckler, chief executive officer of Avast Software. “Combining the strengths of two great tech companies, both founded in the Czech Republic and with a common culture and mission, will put us in a great position to take advantage of the new opportunities ahead, such as security for the enormous growth in IoT”, he added.
“We believe that joining forces with Avast, a private company with significant resources, fully supports our growth objectives and represents the best interests of our stockholders,” said Gary Kovacs, chief executive officer, AVG.
“Our new scale will allow us to accelerate investments in growing markets and continue to focus on providing comprehensive and simple-to-use solutions for consumers and businesses alike. As the definition of online security continues to shift from being device-centric, to being concerned with devices, data and people, we believe the combined company, with the strengthened value proposition, will emerge as a leader in this growing market”, he said.
Jefferies International Limited is acting as exclusive financial advisor, and White & Case LLP and De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek N.V. are acting as legal advisors, to Avast. Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC is acting as financial advisor to AVG and Bridge Street Securities, LLC is acting as independent financial advisor to the supervisory board of AVG. Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP and Allen & Overy LLP are acting as legal advisors to AVG.