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Intel considering selling off its cyber security business McAfee

In a recent development, Intel is jotting down the options for Intel Security and it might plan to sell the Antivirus maker software formerly known as McAfee. Six years ago, the same software maker was bought by Intel for $7.7 billion.

Even though Intel has declined to offer any clarity on the issue, people who are part of the ongoing discussion have indicated that the Silicon Valley chipmaker might be considering options for selling their cyber security unit to bankers, and if at all the deal is materialized, it’d be one of the largest within the sector.

The private equity buyers are also showing a lot of interest in cyber security units as they are expecting a generous cash inflow, sourced from the corporate customers as they become increasingly worried about protecting their business from cyber-attacks. Speculations are that a group of PE firms might chip in to purchase Intel Security if it is sold for its original price ($7.7. billion) or a little more.

If Intel’s cyber security unit is sold off, it won’t be the first in the market. During the start of this month, Bain Capital sold BlueCoat security to Symantec, and Vista Equity Partners also purchased Ping Identity, an authentication service.

Intel has been restructuring its business and is also planning to cut around 12,000 jobs which will be the largest workforce reduction in a decade. Additionally, the company may be selling its cyber security unit because currently, the decline in PC market has got the company focussing on selling chips for cloud computing rather than PCs.

The chipmaker purchased McAfee in 2010 with an intention of embedding their cyber security functionality onto chips, which could detect threats at a deeper level but even after six years, this plan has not been materialized which might just have caused a shift in their strategy, thereby option to sell off their cyber security unit.