FireEye to split from Mandiant in $1.2B deal

Kevin Mandia, CEO of FireEye, testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee. FireEye announced it has purchased Respond Software, startup that sells machine learning and automated, cloud-based investigation, detection and response services.   (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

FireEye announced its products and name will be sold to a consortium led by private equity firm Symphony Technology Group in a $1.2 billion dollar acquisition announced June 2.

The deal, which FireEye expects to close at the end of this year, will give Symphony Technology Group ownership of their network, email, endpoint and cloud security products their security management and orchestration platform, as well as the FireEye name.

As a result, FireEye will split from Mandiant Consulting, ending a seven-year partnership that helped elevate the firm to one of the premiere threat intelligence companies in the world. In a statement, CEO Kevin Mandia said the deal would allow both Mandiant and FireEye’s security products to continue expanding within their own markets.

“We believe this separation will unlock our high-growth Mandiant Solutions business and allow both organizations to better serve customers,” Mandia said. “After closing, we will be able to concentrate exclusively on scaling our intelligence and frontline expertise through the Mandiant Advantage platform, while the FireEye Products business will be able to prioritize investment on its cloud-first security product portfolio.”

Under the agreement, Mandiant will retain ownership of Mandiant Advantage, the company’s flagship threat intelligence platform and continue to offer the same controls-agnostic security software, consulting and managed defense services. FireEye and Symphony Technology Group will own the Helix cloud security platform.

In a call with investors, Mandia said decoupling with FireEye products was “essential” to Mandiant’s long-term future and plans to work with and incorporate data from other threat intelligence firms and partners.

“Independence is essential to the Mandiant Advantage platform. Companies want to know whether they are secure against the latest threats and I believe we are the only company to offer confidence in that regard,” said Mandia. “Being independent from the FireEye security controls business will help eliminate any perceived bias in our platform.”

Mandia and president John Watters also laid out their vision for Mandiant going forward, saying the company foresees the current gap between the average victim organization’s security and the average attacker’s capabilities will likely endure indefinitely, leaving an opening for the company to develop into a long-term solution for many businesses that lack the in-house expertise to close it.

The company also believes that security technology has evolved to the point where it can support the kind of widespread automation of threat intelligence, positioning Mandiant to scale their services to organizations across the world.

The Palo Alto, California-based Symphony Technology Group has been on an acquisition tear in the cybersecurity industry since 2019, adding cloud security firm Red Seal, RSA Security and McAfee before this latest purchase.

FireEye and Mandiant will continue to operate together until the deal is official, and the company is working on a reseller and market cooperation agreements, a strategic collaboration agreement, and a transition services agreement to ensure business continuity.

“Customers and partners can expect to receive the full benefit of these agreements as the companies share technology, telemetry, threat intelligence, and expertise,” a press release for the company stated.

This story is developing. Check back for updates.

Derek B. Johnson

Derek is a senior editor and reporter at SC Media, where he has spent the past three years providing award-winning coverage of cybersecurity news across the public and private sectors. Prior to that, he was a senior reporter covering cybersecurity policy at Federal Computer Week. Derek has a bachelor’s degree in print journalism from Hofstra University in New York and a master’s degree in public policy from George Mason University in Virginia.

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