Dell Technologies announced today that it was selling legacy security firm RSA for $2.075 billion to a consortium of investors led by Symphony Technology Group. Other investors include Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board and AlpInvest Partners.
RSA came to Dell when it bought EMC for $67 billion in 2015. EMC bought the company in 2006 for a similar price it was sold for today, $2.1 billion. The deal includes several pieces, including the RSA security conference held each year in San Francisco.
As for products, the consortium gets RSA Archer, RSA NetWitness Platform, RSA SecurID, RSA Fraud and Risk Intelligence -- in addition to the conference. At the time of the EMC acquisition, in a letter to customers, Michael Dell actually called out RSA as one of the companies he looked forward to welcoming to the Dell family after the deal was completed:
I am excited to work with the EMC, VMware, Pivotal, VCE, Virtustream and RSA teams, and I am personally committed to the success of our new company, our partners and above all, to you, our customers.
Times change however, and perhaps Dell decided it was simply time to get some cash and jettison the veteran security company to go a bit more modern, as RSA's approach no longer aligned with Dell's company-wide security strategy.
"The strategies of RSA and Dell Technologies have evolved to address different business needs with different go-to-market models. The sale of RSA gives us greater flexibility to focus on integrated innovation across Dell Technologies, while allowing RSA to focus on its strategy of providing risk, security and fraud teams with the ability to holistically manage digital risk," Dell Technology's chief operating officer and vice chairman Jeff Clarke, wrote in a blog post announcing the deal.
Meanwhile, RSA president Rohit Ghai tried to put a happy spin on the outcome, framing it as the next step in the company's long and storied history. "The one constant in every episode of our existence has been our focus on the success of our customers and our ability to endure through market disruption by innovating on behalf of our customers," he wrote in a blog post on the RSA company website.
The deal is subject to the normal kinds of regulatory approval before it is finalized.