Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Cisco to Acquire IronPort for Email Security

Cisco Systems agreed to acquire IronPort Systems, a start-up specializing in messaging security appliances, for approximately $830 million in cash and stock.

IronPort, which is based in San Bruno, California, is best known for its email security platform. The company claims that eight of the ten largest ISPs and nearly 20% of the world's largest enterprises are using its platforms. The systems provide spam defense, virus defense and content scanning. IronPort also offers a line of web security appliances, which protect the network perimeter against spyware and a wide variety of Web-based threats. These appliances combine multiple layers of Web security technology such as deep application content inspection, a Layer 4 Traffic Monitor, IronPort Web "Reputation Filters" and multiple malware signatures.

"We feel there is enormous potential for enhanced email and message protection solutions to be integrated into the existing Cisco Self-Defending Network framework," said Richard Palmer, senior vice president of Cisco's Security Technology Group.

IronPort has 408 employees based primarily in San Bruno, California.

  • IronPort Systems is headed by Scott Weiss, CEO and co-founder. Weiss was one of the early team members at Hotmail, which grew to become the world's largest web-based email service and was acquired by Microsoft.

  • IronPort Systems was founded in 2000.

  • In November 2006, IronPort agreed to acquire PostX Corporation, a leading provider of email encryption technology for enterprises based in Cupertino, California.

  • In October 2004, IronPort raised $45 million in series D funding, bringing the total amount of money raised to date to $90 million. The financing was led by New Enterprise Associates, with participation of Rembrandt Venture Partners, Menlo Ventures and Allegis Capital.