Symantec acquires Altiris

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Symantec acquires Altiris

Symantec will acquire enterprise management software provider Altiris, the two companies announced today.

The Cupertino, Calif. company will pay US$830 million – about US$33 per share of Altiris common stock – for the Lindon, Utah firm.

The purchase should better Symantec’s standpoint in the endpoint-management market.

Rob Clyde, vice president of technology under Symantec's CTO, told today that the markets for endpoint security and management are converging.

"If you think about it, the most secure endpoint is a well managed endpoint, so it’s tough to have a truly secure endpoint without providing management," he said.

John Pescatore, Gartner analyst, told today that the acquisition is not without risk for Symantec.

"Symantec can go to enterprises and say, instead of using two different platforms, you can do anti-virus and configuration management all with the Symantec product," he said.

"The downside is that those are usually managed by two different groups, and they have different demands…From a technology point of view it makes sense, and from a market point of view, it’s fairly risky."

Symantec just last week announced that it may slash up to five percent of its workforce, after reporting a 25-percent increase in quarterly profits. The firm planned to save about US$200 million by cutting jobs.

Symantec and Altiris share a history.

On May 12, 2005, the two companies resolved a patent lawsuit by entering into a cross-licensing agreement that resolved all legal claims between the vendors, according to Symantec's third-quarter earnings report released last week. No further details on the settlement could be obtained today.

Click here to email Online Editor Frank Washkuch Jr.

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