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Darktrace confirms early takeover talks with PE firm Thoma Bravo - TechMarketView

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Date: 2022-08-16 08:48:41

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Tuesday 16 August 2022

DarktraceUS based private equity firm Thoma Bravo is considering a bid to privatise UK listed cybersecurity firm Darktrace. Discussions are at a preliminary stage and there can be no certainty that any offer will be made. No terms of a proposed deal have currently been disclosed. The private equity group will have until September 12th to either make a formal offer or abandon the takeover effort. Darktrace shares rose 20% this morning on the news.

Thoma Bravo, with $114bn in assets, is one of the world’s most active investors in cyber security companies, with a specialised set of dealmakers targeting the sector. Earlier this month they announced the acquisition of US based Identify solution provider Ping Identity for $2.8bn, and in April they bought cybersecurity provider Proofpoint for $12.3bn – see here. They also own UK security software company Sophos which they bought in 2020.

Thomas Bravo also continues to invest in other technology segments, with a $10.7bn acquisition of business planning software company Anaplan announced in March and Banking and payments specialist, Bottomline Technologies which it bought for $2.6bn in December.

If the deal goes through this would be a loss off another technology heavy hitter being removed from the LSE, to join the likes of Avast, who announced in early August a merger with US software company Norton LifeLock see here. It should not come as a huge surprise however that Darktrace is an attractive target, they posted 48% revenue growth for FY22 (see here) and shares trade at a significantly lower valuation to its US listed peers.