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F5 to Buy Versafe

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In a bid to strengthen its security service, F5 Networks Inc. (FFIV - Free Report) is set to acquire Versafe Ltd., a provider of web anti-fraud, anti-phishing, and anti-malware solutions. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition is not likely to have a material impact on its operating results.

The acquisition will enable F5 to provide its customers with secure access to data and applications, which in turn will create a protected business environment. Versafe technology provides complete, real-time detection and protection for its users, thereby reducing the risk of theft of intellectual property and money sensitive data and identity.

Additionally, Versafe provides advisory security service and remediation through its Security Operations Center (SOC), which will enhance F5's security solutions portfolio.

Versafe Ltd. develops security applications for identity theft and online fraud prevention applications. Specifically, the Versafe security suite provides anti-phishing, anti-trojans, anti-pharming and brand protection solutions. The company also provides fraud prevention, operation center, forensics, governance, risk and compliance services.

F5 Networks reported total revenue of $370.3 million in the third quarter of 2013, up 5.0% from $352.6 million in the year-ago period. Improvement in revenues was mainly due to broad-based strength in end markets and geographical regions.

In Feb 2013, F5 Networks acquired LineRate Systems, a privately-held networking services provider. The acquisition strengthens F5’s exposure to the networking market. The company is a key player in the Software-defined Networking (SDN) market and the acquisition is expected to pave the way for F5’s penetration within the segment.

Better execution and focus on enterprise and service providers have placed F5 Networks well in the application delivery controller (ADC) market. F5 Networks is also keen on expanding its cloud exposure.

However, key networking players such as Cisco Systems (CSCO - Free Report) , Juniper Networks (JNPR - Free Report) and Brocade are also increasing exposure in the SDN segment, so only time will tell if F5 is able to maintain its niche position.

Currently, F5 Networks has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

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