Intel is spinning out its security business with help from private equity firm TPG, as the chip giant focuses more on its top growth opportunities.
Intel will collect $3.1 billion in cash and retain a 49% ownership stake. TPG will own 51% of the new company, to be called McAfee. Under terms of the spin off, TPG will make a $1.1 billion equity investment in McAfee, which will also take on $2 billion of debt. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter of 2017, Intel said.
The deal ends Intel’s sometimes tumultuous efforts to add cybersecurity software features to its various semiconductor chip businesses. It also marks a near-final coda to Intel’s $8 billion purchase of McAfee in 2010. Analysts and investors have favored disposing of the business, which they said didn’t add much to the chip sales and was too dependent on the shrinking PC market.
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The unit reported $1.1 billion of revenue in the first half of the year, up 11% from the same period of 2015, and operating income of $182 million, a 391% jump.
Chris Young, who joined Intel’s (INTC) security unit from Cisco Systems (CSCO) in 2014, will be CEO of the new company. “As a standalone company supported by these two partners, we will be in an even greater position of strength, committed to being the best provider the cybersecurity industry has ever seen,” Young said in a statement.
Intel said it still plans to collaborate with McAfee to add security features across its product lines.
TPG said it had been focused on cybersecurity as a growth area. “We have long identified the cybersecurity sector, which has experienced strong growth due to the increasing volume and severity of cyberattacks, as one of the most important areas in technology,” Bryan Taylor, a partner at TPG, said in a statement.
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TPG, which used to be known as Texas Pacific Group, got its start investing in traditional leveraged buyouts. But the firm along with other big private equity players have increasingly ventured into tech investing. TPG was said to be one of the bidders for Yahoo, for example.
Intel may have missed an opportunity to sell at the height of the market, however, as shares of cyber security companies have fallen considerably over the past year. Shares of FireEye (FEYE), for example, are down 57% and Rapid7 (RPD) shares have lost 8%.
Shares of Intel, which have gained 6% so far this year, were unchanged in after hours trading on Wednesday.