Raytheon in discussions to acquire Websense, a cyber-security firm

By | March 18, 2015

The giant defense contractor Raytheon Co. is reportedly considering to acquire Websense Inc., an Austin-based security software firm owned by Vista Equity Partners. The acquisition is expected to cost around $1 billion according to a report by Bloomberg News.


Websense, founded in 1994 and owned by Vista Equity Partners LLC, is known to make software that blocks website and let companies inspect network traffic and filter e-mails for security and to protect from hacking threats. Raytheon, on the other side, is the world’s biggest missile maker with products including the Patriot system. Last November the company acquired Blackbird Technologies, a surveillance and cybersecurity company, for $420 million to boost up its intelligence business.

The talks of the acquisition shot up Raytheon’s stock price nearly 3% on Monday to close at $109.60 per share as investors responded to the report. This gives the company a market value of about $33.5 billion. In an interview in January, Dave Wajsgras the Chief Financial Officer of Raytheon said its pursuing other deals with a focus on developing cyber capabilities and electronic-warfare operations. He also said, “We will continue to focus on technology-based acquisition in areas that we see we can expand our markets and build on our technology foundation.”

Last year, Websense relocated its headquarters from San Diago to Stonelake Boulevard in North Austin and planned to employ 500 employees. The move came a year after reports surfaced that Vista Equity would shift the company to Texas to cut down costs and boost its workforce. Favoring to the report, Austin City Council then approved $438,000 incentives deal that laid the path for Websense to use the state-funded $4.5 million incentives package.

Regarding this talks on acquisition, spokespersons from Raytheon and Vista declined to comment on it.