With all the talk about brand and internet safety lately, a familiar name has re-emerged on the cybersecurity front, as McAfee announced that it has begun operating as a new standalone company, in place of what had been known as Intel Security.
As a standalone business, McAfee is one of the world’s largest pure-play cybersecurity firms. Built on the belief that “Together is Power”, the new McAfee will expand upon its leading security solutions platform to better enable customers to effectively identify and orchestrate responses to cyber-threats, according to a press release.
The launch of McAfee marks the closing of an investment by TPG and Intel Corporation (INTC) to establish a pure-play cybersecurity company with access to significant capital, operational and technology resources. Additionally, McAfee announced that private equity investment firm Thoma Bravo has joined, as a minority investor in the company, through an agreement with TPG. Intel is retaining a 49% equity stake in the new entity.
The McAfee name is no stranger to security issues, since it was the label on nearly every single computer safety software for a good stretch. But founder John McAfee sold his cyber security firm to Intel in 2011 for $7.7bn. Intel renamed McAfee as Intel Security in 2014 as it looked to ship the software suite with its products. McAfee tried to rebrand his investment company MGT Capital Investments as John McAfee Global Technologies, but Intel stopped that, since it held the rights to the McAfee trademark. The reasoning, apparently, is that Intel wanted to capitalize on the brand heritage and name as McAfee originally intended – for cybersecurity.
With the help of its new investment partners, McAfee will apply greater market focus, build its platform and target new financial, operational and technology investments to better address the cybersecurity market’s significant global growth opportunity. Intel senior vice president and general manager Chris Young will lead the new McAfee as chief executive officer. TPG partner Bryan Taylor has been named chairman of the board.
“Cybersecurity is the greatest challenge of the connected age, weighing heavily on the minds of parents, executives and world leaders alike,” said Young. “As a standalone company with a clear purpose, McAfee gains the agility to unite people, technology and organizations against our common adversaries and ensure our technology-driven future is safe.”
Added Brian Krzanich, Intel CEO: “We offer Chris Young and the McAfee team our full support as they establish themselves as one of the largest pure-play cybersecurity companies in the industry. Security remains important to Intel, and in addition to our equity position and ongoing collaboration with McAfee, Intel will continue to integrate industry-leading security and privacy capabilities in our products from the cloud to billions of smart, connected computing devices.”
A recent statement on the McAfee website by Young stated: “Our connected world is under siege by adversaries threatening the digital freedom sacred to us all. An industry with no shortage of problems needs a commensurate supply of solutions. With these challenges in mind, nearly seven months ago, TPG and Intel entered into an agreement to create one of the largest pure-play cybersecurity companies in the world. Today, McAfee is born.”