By Jim Finkle
Feb 10 Cybersecurity firm FireEye Inc
plans to take on Cisco Systems Inc and Palo Alto
Networks Inc in selling intrusion prevention systems,
which help companies detect cyber threats that breach their
FireEye said on Monday it wants to start selling the new
products by the middle of this year, adding to its existing
technology that helps protect computers from infection by
tainted messages and malicious websites.
The intrusion prevention systems (IPS) market totaled nearly
$1.9 billion in 2012, according to market research firm IDC.
That is nearly 10 times the size of the market for specialized
threat analysis and protection technology, for which FireEye is
"They are really working to broaden their addressable
market," said John Grady, an analyst with IDC who was briefed by
FireEye on the new IPS technology.
Besides Cisco and Palo Alto Networks, other players in the
IPS market include Intel Corp and Trend Micro Inc
, according to Grady.
FireEye has been aggressively expanding since it went public
last year in one of the hottest U.S. stock market debuts. Its
shares have nearly quadrupled since September 2013 and jumped
8.65 percent to close at $78.85 on Monday on the Nasdaq.
In December, FireEye purchased cyber forensics and security
software firm Mandiant Corp for about $1 billion. The company is
best known for uncovering a Chinese military unit believed to be
behind a series of hacking attacks on U.S. companies.
Entering the IPS market is part of FireEye Chief Executive
Dave DeWalt's strategy of developing a technology platform that
customers can use to run a variety of products to protect their
networks from cyber attacks.
When he was named CEO in November 2012, FireEye's technology
was well regarded by industry analysts, but many described it as
a provider of a niche product that companies needed to bolt on
to software and equipment from bigger security firms.
Adding new product lines could help the company achieve
profitability. FireEye has reported large losses over the past
year as DeWalt spent heavily to build a global sales force to
market its products.
"They continue to add more notches on their product belt,"
said FBR analyst Daniel Ives. "Combined with Mandiant, they're
front and center to really be one of the main consolidators in
terms of overall (security) spending, to gain more of a share of
the overall budgets."
FireEye posted an operating loss of $111 million in the
first nine months of last year, though revenue more than doubled
from a year earlier to $104 million.
In addition to the IPS product, FireEye also plans to unveil
tools to analyze security events and describe how it has
incorporated Mandiant's threat detection software into its
platform, according to a company spokesman.
When asked if other acquisitions are in the works, DeWalt
said by email that the company would "be opportunistic with
future acquisitions as the need arises."