Symantec Shares Plunge After Reports of Broadcom Deal Stall

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Shares of cybersecurity giant Symantec plunged on Monday following reports that the company’s acquisition talks with Broadcom have stalled due to a disagreement over price.

Several major news outlets reported in early July that chipmaker Broadcom had been in advanced talks to acquire Symantec in a deal that could exceed $15 billion.

While the two companies were reportedly hoping to make an official announcement on Tuesday, the deal is said to have stalled after Broadcom reduced its offer by over $1.50 per share. The chipmaker had initially offered $28.25 per share and Symantec reportedly will not accept anything lower than $28.

Symantec shares dropped by over 10 percent to under $22 after the news broke and recovered slightly to $22.84 by the end of the day. The company’s stock jumped from $22.10 to $25.48 after news of the acquisition came to light.

Broadcom shares fell roughly four percent when the merger talks were first announced and went up over 1 percent on Monday.

Broadcom, which last year acquired CA Technologies for nearly $19 billion, is reportedly still interested in making a deal with Symantec. Broadcom also attempted to acquire rival Qualcomm last year, but the deal was blocked by US President Donald Trump.

Symantec says it provides products and services to over 50 million consumers and 350,000 organizations around the world.

The company recently reported a revenue of roughly $4.7 billion for the fiscal year 2019. The financial report, which showed a smaller revenue than the previous year and what analysts had estimated, was accompanied by an announcement that Greg Clark had stepped down and board member Richard Hill was named interim chief executive officer and president.

If the Broadcom acquisition of Symantec is confirmed, it would be the second time a chip giant acquires a major cybersecurity firm. Intel acquired McAfee in 2010 for $7.68 billion and later renamed it Intel Security. In 2016, however, McAfee once again became an independent company after a sale to TPG that valued it at $4.2 billion.

Related:Symantec Shares More Information on Internal Investigation

Related: Symantec Acquires Zero Trust Cloud Security Startup Luminate Security

Eduard Kovacs (@EduardKovacs) is a contributing editor at SecurityWeek. He worked as a high school IT teacher for two years before starting a career in journalism as Softpedia’s security news reporter. Eduard holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial informatics and a master’s degree in computer techniques applied in electrical engineering.

Previous Columns by Eduard Kovacs:
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