Channel investors, Content, Endpoint/Device Security

WatchGuard Acquires Panda Security for Endpoint Protection


WatchGuard Technologies has acquired Panda Security, extending the network security company to endpoint security. The deal, which also reinforces WatchGuard's MSP- and MSSP-friendly cybersecurity partner strategies, is expected to close in Q2 2020. Financial terms were not disclosed.

This is M&A deal Number 142 that MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E have covered so far in 2020. See the complete M&A deal list here.

Panda Security has been a Gartner Magic Quadrant honoree for Endpoint Protection Platforms. The company recently extended into threat hunting, and develops services for MSSPs and MSPs.

Panda, based in Spain, launched in 1998. The company now has 600+ employees, and Panda's software now protects 30 million users across 180 countries, the firm says.

WatchGuard's Technology Portfolio, MSSP Partner Focus

WatchGuard's established network security solutions span GAV, IPS, VPN, sandboxing, and advanced threat detection, correlation, and response. The company also offers secure Wi-Fi solutions, multi-factor authentication, and now most recently, user-focused security services.

Corey Nachreiner, CTO, WatchGuard Technologies
Corey Nachreiner, CTO, WatchGuard Technologies

WatchGuard's MSSP and MSP focus are strong. Corey Nachreiner, CTO of WatchGuard, described extended R&D efforts and multi-tenant developments for MSPs and MSSPs during an RSA Conference 2020 briefing with MSSP Alert.

The partner effort also includes specialized financial models such as the FlexPay program -- essentially a hardware as a service (HaaS) option for MSSPs and MSPs, Nachreiner noted.

Plus, WatchGuard has M&A experience. Additional deals include buying Percipient Networks for Domain name system (DNS) filtering services in 2018, and acquiring Datablink for fraud prevention solutions.

WatchGuard Acquires Panda Security: Executive Perspectives

Juan Santamaria, CEO, Panda Security
Prakash Panjwani, CEO, WatchGuard Technologies

Describing the deal WatchGuard CEO Prakash Panjwani said:

“Businesses today face an increasingly sophisticated and evolving threat landscape, scarcity of trained security professionals, and an increasingly porous perimeter. As a result, network security, advanced endpoint protection, multi-factor authentication, secure networking, and threat detection and response capabilities are consistently ranked as top security investment areas by IT decision-makers and IT solution providers who serve them. By bringing the companies together, we enable our current and future customers and partners to consolidate their fundamental security services under a single brand, backed by the innovation and quality that is a core part of both companies’ DNA.”

Added Panda Security CEO Juan Santamaria:

“We are thrilled to merge with WatchGuard because of the new scale and portfolio access it provides to our customers and partners. We are also excited to see our innovative product portfolio be delivered via WatchGuard’s strong global network of partners. Together, we look forward to building a security platform that bridges the network and user perimeter, with capabilities that are unmatched in the cybersecurity market.”

Endpoint Protection: Mergers and Acquisitions

M&A activity among the pure endpoint protection providers has been strong in recent months -- including Broadcom buying Symantec's enterprise business, VMware purchasing Carbon Black, BlackBerry buying Cylance, and Thoma Bravo buying Sophos.

Additional rivals in the market include Bitdefender, Cisco Systems AMP (Advanced Malware Protection), CrowdStrike, Fortinet, MalwareBytes, McAfee, Palo Alto Networks, SentinelOne, and Trend Micro, among others.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.