Private equity giant KKR buys security firm Barracuda Networks

Private equity giant KKR buys security firm Barracuda Networks

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The cybersecurity firm Barracuda Networks Inc. revealed today it has been acquired by the private equity firm KKR & Co Inc.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Reuters said KKR paid Barracuda’s former owner Thoma Bravo about $4 billion to take over the company.

KKR said it’s planning to help Barracuda accelerate its growth by moving beyond email security into key adjacent markets such as managed detection and response, extended detection and response, and secure access service edge.

Barracuda is mainly focused on providing email protection, application security, network security and data protection to a client base of about 200,000 mainly small and medium-sized businesses. It also offers a partner program for managed service providers.

CRN reported that KKR has made it quite clear it intends to expand Barracuda’s range of services and products, and that it will put its money where its mouth is. KKR said it will ensure Barracuda has the resources it needs because it sees a “tremendous opportunity for growth” in the company.

“We continue to see cybersecurity as a highly attractive sector and are excited to back a clear leader in the space,” said John Park, head of Americas Technology Private Equity at KKR. “Given its proven track record of growth and innovation, we believe that Barracuda has the right team and model to capture business in this growing market.”

KKR has a lot of experience in the cybersecurity business, having previously invested in companies such as Ping Identity Corp., Cylance Inc. — which has since been acquired and folded into BlackBerry Ltd. — DarkTrace Ltd. and ForgeRock Inc.

Barracuda Chief Executive Hatem Naguib also appears to remain committed to the company. “With the support of KKR, we will continue to invest in growth and foster a culture that gives our team the resources and inspiration to continue to create and deliver the next generation of leading cybersecurity solutions for our customers and partners,” he said.

One immediate bonus for Barracuda’s staff is that the company will soon implement KKR’s employee ownership program. Under that initiative, all employees become part-owners of the business. KKR has previously implemented the program at 25 companies it has acquired since 2011 and clearly believes it’s a strong model that encourages employees to devote themselves to their company’s success.

Image: pixelcreatures/Pixabay

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