Avast Software, the company behind one of the most popular antivirus solutions in the world has announced the acquisition of AVG Technologies (NYSE: AVG), another security software provider.
After issuing a press release back in July, Avast Software has finally completed the deal to absorb AVG. The purchase agreement specified a $25 price per share, costing Avast a total of $1.4 billion.
This operation will nearly double Avast’s user base, from 230 million clients to over 400 million. Although both companies will start to act as one, the trademark AVG and Avast will remain untouched depending on each country’s market share.
Avast has said that, excluding China, the combined entities will reach one-third of the world’s PC userbase. Approximately 160 million smartphones are running either Avast or AVG’s solutions.
Some employees of both companies will not be happy, as there will be job cuts of duplicated roles inside the now fused corporation. Avast CEO, Vince Steckler, made some interesting comments on the deal to TechCrunch. The entrepreneur describes security solutions as a ‘big data’ business:
We’re not into the classic signatures and checksums. These are big data machine learning products, and they rely on having a massive number of end-points to collect data from to process, to determine what’s good and what isn’t.
As such, Avast will now have over 400 million data points to analyze, as this is the same number as there are users. Steckler went out of his way to comment on the market’s shift to free and freemium business models, remarking the decline of market share for companies like Norton, McAfee, and Kaspersky.
Avast’s CEO had comments on the company’s focus for the Internet of Things (IoT). Steckler stated that Avast is taking an approach that directly targets (shields) the router.
I suspect that most of the security for IoT is going to end up in the cloud or at the network level and not really on the device itself.
Very few of the [IoT] things actually directly connect to the Internet. Most everything connects to the router, which connects to the Internet. So… you don’t need to necessarily protect each device because most of the devices are fairly simplistic. What you need to do is protect the devices from being broken into, and the easiest point of doing that is at the network or gateway level, which is where we do it.