About Symantec Corporation

With so much information digitized and stored on the internet, the need to secure it from unwanted intruders is crucial. Symantec fulfills that need for both companies and individuals. Its Norton product has been providing consumer-based digital security for over fifteen years, protecting its customers against viruses, detecting attempted intrusions, reducing spam, and filtering unwanted content. Its Enterprise endeavors perform similar, though more expansive and expedient, efforts to protect companies against cyber attacks. Its products are deployed by 350,000 worldwide customers, including 90% of the US Fortune 1000. The past three years have been eventful as the company sold its Veritas data management business for $5.3 billion and purchased Blue Coat Systems for $4.6 billion to build up its enterprise-level business and then LifeLock for $2.3 billion to beef up is consumer identity protection offerings.

Operations

Symantec operates two business segments: Enterprise Security and Consumer Digital Safety. Enterprise generates some 60% of revenue and the rest comes from the Consumer segment.

Enterprise Security provides products and services to help companies and government institutions secure digital access and protect data. It runs global security operation centers, from which cyber traffic is monitored, analyzed, and if necessary responded to with evasive or recovery actions. It’s approach to integrated cyber defense provides security solutions for web-based activity, end user actions, information protection, and security for digital communications. The segment offers Secure Socket Layer (SSL) Certificates authentication, mail and web security, data center security, data loss prevention, information security, endpoint security and management, and encryption services.

Consumer Digital Safety helps individuals and small businesses protect themselves against such things as identity theft, cyber attacks, and unwanted email spam. As the internet of things (IoT) expands to include everything from home refrigerators to smart phones, the opportunities for unwanted intrusions is growing exponentially. The segment’s Norton product suite provides protection across a variety of internet-connected devices such as PCs, Apple MACs, smart phones, and networking gear. Its LifeLock product is one of the best known identity theft protection services. Symantec maintains what it calls the largest civilian database of threat indicators, which allows it to reduce false positives and provide faster and better protection for customers.

Geographic Reach

Mountain View, CA-based Symantec has operations in more than 40 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific/Japan, and Latin America. Hub locations include Mountain View, CA, Herndon, VA, Boston, MA, London, UK, Dublin, Ireland, and Singapore.

About 60% of revenue comes from the Americas, roughly 25% from EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa), and the rest from the Asia Pacific region.

Sales and Marketing

Symantec sells its products through a direct sales force, as well as through distributors, resellers, computer manufacturers, and systems integrators. Its consumer products are sold to consumers through the company's e-commerce platform as well as through distributors, direct marketers, ISPs, wireless carriers, and retailers.

Financial Performance

Note: Financial figures from FY2014 forward are restated due to the divestiture of its Veritas unit (noted as discontinued operations).

Revenue in recent years has been on a slight downward trend, ranging between $3.6 billion and $4.2 billion. Net income was profitable and flat for several years before jumping to nearly $2.5 billion in FY2016 (due in part to the Veritas sale) before dipping into negative territory in FY2017 (due to acquisitions).

For FY2017 (ended March 31, 2017), revenue rose 12% to $4.0 billion, largely from the inclusion of sales from the acquired Blue Coat network protection business. Sales in the consumer segment were flat for the year.

Net income in FY2017 dove into negative territory for the first time since 2009, ending the year at a $106 million loss. The Blue Coat purchase brought with it increased amortization charges, restructuring costs, and an uplift in general and administrative expenses, all of which contributed to a sizeable uptick in total operating expenses. The LifeLock purchase occurred late in the fiscal year and added expenses as well, but in much smaller proportion than the Blue Coat activity.

Cash on hand at the end of FY2017 was $4.2 billion, down from the previous year’s $6.0 billion. The biggest cash transactions revolved around the Blue Coat and LifeLock purchases, for which Symantec issued $6.1 billion in new debt to help pay the $6.7 billion acquisition costs. Operating activities used $220 million of cash due to the net income loss and an atypically large tax bill.

Strategy

In the past few years Symantec refocused its entire business on security. In late 2015 it divested its ill-fitted Veritas business that it bought in 2005 and used the proceeds to help purchase BlueCoat in mid 2016 and LifeLock in early 2017. The M&A activity was expansive and operationally disruptive and its effects showed up in the company’s FY2017 financial results.

Part of the strategic reasoning behind the acquisitions was the desire to cross-sell and upsell products. Blue Coat brought with it a cache of large, enterprise customers to whom Symantec can sell its other enterprise security products. LifeLock similarly brought customers (nearly 4 million) into the Symantec sphere and they are prime candidates to see the value in the company’s other security products. The consumer segment alone believes it can garner more than $700 million in cross-sell revenue, over the next few years.

Symantec’s long-term view is to capture 10% of the $100 billion digital security market, that it believes is comprised of the Internet of Things (IoT), data privacy, cyber resources, the digital economy, cybercrime, and cloud security.

Mergers and Acquisitions

Symantec acquired Fireglass, a cybersecurity company, in 2017. The deal was made to strengthen Symantec's products that protect corporate email and web surfing. Fireglass develops a technology called "browser isolation," which creates virtual web sites. That allows users to browse information without being affected by viruses. Companies in health care, financial services, and telecommunications as well as government agencies, have been early users of the technology. Terms were not disclosed.

In February 2017 Symantec paid $2.3 billion for Lifelock and its identity protection and fraud software. Symantec plans to roll Lifelock's products into its own security offerings to provide a more comprehensive consumer solution set.

Also in 2017 Symantec agreed to buy Skycure, which provides security technology for mobile applications. Symantec plans to add Skycure's technology into its Integrated Cyber Defense platform and products such as Norton Antivirus and other products with mobile security features. Skycure uses artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques that offers protection for mobile devices on major mobile operating systems. The Skycure technologies set Symantec up to partner with telecommunications companies in building up cyber security for their customers.

In August 2016 Symantec completed the $4.6 billion purchase of Blue Coat Systems, which develops and sells cloud-based security software for corporations. Symantec also got a new CEO in the deal as Blue Coat's chief, Greg Clark, took the helm of Symantec.

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Symantec Corporation

350 Ellis St
Mountain View, CA 94043-2202
Phone: 1 (650) 527-8000

Stats

  • Employer Type: Public
  • Stock Symbol: SYMC
  • Stock Exchange: NASDAQ
  • CEO and Director: Gregory Clark
  • President and COO: Michael Fey
  • Chairman: Daniel H. Schulman
  • 2017 Employees: 13,000

Major Office Locations

  • Mountain View, CA

Other Locations

  • Washington, DC
  • Miami, FL
  • Loganville, GA
  • Indianapolis, IN
  • Shawnee Mission, KS
  • Cambridge, MA
  • Bethesda, MD
  • Saint Paul, MN
  • Chesterfield, MO
  • Tinton Falls, NJ
  • Athens, NY
  • New York, NY
  • Dublin, OH
  • Independence, OH
  • Springfield, OR
  • Weatherly, PA
  • Dallas, TX
  • Houston, TX
  • Lindon, UT
  • Arlington, VA
  • Herndon, VA
  • Machelen (Bt.), Belgium
  • Calgary, Canada
  • Vancouver, Canada
  • Santiago, Chile
  • Winchester, England
  • Toulouse, France
  • Frankfurt Am Main, Germany
  • München, Germany
  • Ratingen, Germany
  • Bengaluru, India
  • Chennai, India
  • Mumbai, India
  • New Delhi, India
  • Pune, India
  • Raigad, India
  • Fukuoka, Japan
  • Kawasaki, Japan
  • Nagoya, Japan
  • Osaka, Japan
  • Moscow, Russia
  • Luchthaven Schiphol, The Netherlands
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