Bain Capital completes $2.4bn purchase of Blue Coat

The sale provides an exit for Thoma Bravo and the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan

Bain Capital has completed its $2.4 billion acquisition of cybersecurity provider Blue Coat Systems Inc.  from Thoma Bravo, according to a statement by the target company.

Jefferies Finance provided debt financing to support the transaction, which provides an exit for Thoma Bravo following the Chicago private equity group's $1.3 billion take-private purchase of the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based enterprise security business three years ago. The Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan was also a co-investor in the Thoma Bravo purchase.

“Blue Coat is a leader in the enterprise security market with its innovative product portfolio and 80 percent of the Fortune 500 as customers who entrust Blue Coat to help protect their networks,” said David Humphrey, a managing director at Bain Capital, who noted in a statement that Blue Coat could go public again at some point.

Bain Capital, a Boston-based firm with $80 billion of capital under management, funded its acquisition with equity from its Capital Fund XI and Bain Capital Europe Fund VI, a source told Private Equity International earlier this year.

Blue Coat provides a range of IT security products, as well as global cloud security infrastructure, and offers advanced threat defence, encrypted data traffic, incident response and forensic-related services.

Gregory Clark, chief executive of Blue Coat Systems, said the deal with Bain Capital positions the business for its next stage of growth. 

For seller Thoma Bravo, the harvest comes on the heels of the closing of its $1.06 billion Thoma Bravo Special Opportunities Fund II in April. The private equity group is also investing from its $3.6 billion Thoma Bravo Fund XI, which closed in May 2014.

Officials from Thoma Bravo did not return calls to discuss the return the firm made from its sale of Blue Coat by press time.

Goldman, Sachs & Co. served as financial advisor to Blue Coat, while Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati was its counsel.

Ropes & Gray LLP provided counsel to Bain Capital and PwC served as its accounting advisor.