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Symantec Completes Sale of Veritas

Symantec is now a pure-play cyber security company. The company said on Monday that it has completed the sale of Veritas to a group of investors led by The Carlyle Group, giving Symantec roughly $5.3 billion in after-tax cash proceeds—$1 billion less than the company originally expected to receive from the sale.

Mountain View, California-based Symantec announced in August 2015 that it would sell its Veritas information management (IM) business for roughly $8 billion in cash, and that it would receive roughly $6.3 billion in net cash proceeds.

Symantec Logo

The lower sale price came after Symantec and The Carlyle Group announced earlier this month that they had amended the purchase agreement after “uncertainties developed” regarding the transaction, without providing additional details.

“In a difficult environment, we can move forward with a high degree of certainty around closing a transaction that represents attractive value for shareholders,” Michael A. Brown, Symantec president and CEO, said when announcing the revised terms.

In Oct. 2014, Symantec announced its original plans to split into two separate, publicly traded companies – one focused on security, the other focused on information management.

With transaction complete, Symantec holds a small $400 million equity stake in Veritas. Symantec bought Veritas in 2005 for roughly $13.5 billion. 

Symantec said it would return more than $4 billion in capital to its shareholders by the end of March 2017, including a $500 million accelerated share repurchase that was completed in January 2016. An additional $1.8 billion will come at the end of the Company’s third quarter from its previously announced share repurchase program. The company also disclosed an additional $2 billion of capital return that the Board announced today.

“With the Veritas transaction completed, Symantec has the increased financial flexibility to maximize shareholder value through returning significant capital to shareholders and to consider acquisition opportunities that will accelerate our unified security strategy,” Brown, who was appointed CEO in September 2014, said in a statement. 

Symantec said it would provide additional details on its capital return program during its third quarter earnings conference call, which is scheduled for Thursday, February 4, 2016.

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For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the threat landscape and analyzing trends in the National Security and enterprise cybersecurity space. In his role at SecurityWeek, he oversees the editorial direction of the publication and is the Director of several leading security industry conferences around the world.