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Sourcefire Goes to Cisco for $2.7 Billion

The pair means to combine their widgetry to protect users everywhere – from any device to any cloud

Cisco, in a diversification move, is buying Maryland-based cyber-security house Sourcefire for $76 a share in cash and retention bonuses, paying roughly a 29% premium to Monday's closing price of $59.08.

The pair means to combine their widgetry to protect users everywhere - from any device to any cloud - before, during and after an attack.

They say that the evolution of the "Internet of Everything" is making discrete security products useless against dynamic threats and that Sourcefire can provide highly automated, continuously aware threat detection including next-generation intrusion prevention systems, next-generation firewalls and advanced malware protection.

Seems they share a similar view of the role of the network in defense.

The integrated solutions are supposed to be simpler to deploy and offer better security intelligence.

Sourcefire founder and CTO Martin Roesch said in a prepared statement that Cisco's acquisition of the company "will help accelerate the realization of our vision for a new model of security across the extended network. We're excited about the opportunities ahead to expand our footprint via Cisco's global reach, as well as Cisco's commitment to support our pace of innovation in both commercial markets and the open source community."

The acquisition should close by the end of the year and be made part of Cisco's Security Group led by SVP Christopher Young.

Cisco figures it'll be slightly dilutive to its non-GAAP earnings in fiscal year 2014 due to normal purchase accounting adjustments and integration costs.

Sourcefire was founded in 2001 and went public in 2007. It currently has about 650 people.

Last year it reported revenues of $223.1 million, up 35% over 2011.

It's used by mid-sized and large organizations and government agencies to protect their networks, endpoints, mobile devices and virtual environments. Its products include Snort, an open source intrusion prevention technology incorporated into its unified 3D (Discover, Determine, Defend) intrusion prevention system. It also offers ClamAV, an open source gateway anti-virus and anti-malware project.

It markets and sells its appliances, software, and services directly and through OEMs and the channel.

Cisco recently agreed to buy database integrator Composite Software for $180 million.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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