Blue Coat Systems protects and serves corporate networks. Its proxy appliances protect networks from viruses and other security threats and improve network performance. The devices provide Web content filtering, virus and spyware protection, user authentication, and the ability to limit or block peer-to-peer applications such as instant messaging. They can also be configured to provide WAN acceleration, speeding the delivery of business applications with Blue Coat's bandwidth management, protocol optimization, compression, and caching technologies. In 2016 Symantec agreed to buy Blue Coat for $4.6 billion. In 2015 Bain Capital bought Blue Coat for $2.4 billion from private equity investor Thoma Bravo, which paid $1.3 billion in 2012.
Change in Company Type
Blue Coat brings enterprise-level security software, delivered via cloud-computing, to Symantec's mostly personal computer-oriented product mix. Symantec also gets a new CEO in Blue Coat's boss, Greg Clark. He takes the place of Symantec's previous CEO, who left after disappointing earnings. As part of the deal, Bain Capital will reinvest $750 million of its proceeds from the deal in Symantec.
Blue Coat operates from a half dozen offices in the US. It has another 30 offices around the world, from Argentina to South Korea.
Sales and Marketing
Blue Coat markets its products to customers worldwide, selling primarily through distributors, systems integrators, managed service providers, and resellers. It counts some 15,000 customers that come from the health care, finance, education, and other industries, as well as service providers and government entities. Among its customers are Grupo Lala, NYSE Euronext, Texas Children's Hospital, and Motel 6.
The company is targeting Web security, WAN optimization, and cloud-based security services for growth. Blue Coat plans to invest in additional data centers and equipment to support its cloud computing initiatives. It is also further developing its Web security and WAN optimization appliances with cloud connectors that can be integrated with the Blue Coat Cloud Service. In 2014 the company partnered with Guidance Software to integrate its Security Analytics Platform with Guidance's EnCase Cybersecurity to provide more visibility into both network traffic and endpoint devices.
Mergers and Acquisitions
In 2015 Blue Coat acquired Perspecsys Inc., which develops enterprise cloud data protection products. The deal expands Blue Coat's cloud security portfolio.