Malware, Network Security

GFI buys Sunbelt Software for its anti-malware offering


GFI Software, a security provider that caters to small and midsize businesses, announced Tuesday that it has acquired 16-year-old anti-virus company Sunbelt Software.

Cary, N.C.-based GFI bought Sunbelt primarily for its VIPRE technology, which GFI plans to integrate into its existing email and web security offerings.

Sunbelt's software distribution business, separate from its technology side, is expected to be divested into a separate entity, according to a news release.

"First, let me say that we're thrilled to be part of the GFI team," Alex Eckelberry, president and CEO of Clearwater, Fla.-based Sunbelt, wrote in an email to industry contacts. "Throughout our discussions and interactions with GFI, we have been continually impressed with their dedication to quality, customer service and superior performance throughout the company. Both companies are similar in their attitudes and practices with regard to customer service, product quality, strategic vision, organizational styles and culture."

He said the transaction allows Sunbelt, founded in 1994, to "grow as a company" by expanding its anti-malware capabilities into other security areas, such as as vulnerability assessment, patch management and data leakage prevention.

Walter Scott, CEO of GFI, said in a news release that the two companies offer complementary technologies ripe for integration.

"We have acquired a good, growing and cash-flow positive business that fits well within GFI's strategic vision to consolidate our products and grow our business," Scott said.

Sunbelt executives Mark Patton, vice president of research and development; Eric Sites, CTO, and Bill Emerick, senior vice president of products and services, are expected to join the GFI team, said Eckelberry, who himself will run the VIPRE business at GFI. The major casualty is Stu Sjouwerman, Sunbelt's co-founder, who plans to retire.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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