ForeScout Adds FireEye CEO Dave DeWalt To Board Of Directors

Former Intel Security head Mike DeCesare's first call when joining ForeScout Technologies as CEO three months ago was to FireEye CEO Dave DeWalt, asking him to join the up-and-coming network security company's board of directors.

That request became reality Tuesday, with the Campbell, Calif.-based company's news that DeWalt had joined its board of directors as vice chairman. ForeScout is the first security company board that DeWalt has joined, other than FireEye's.

In an interview with CRN, DeCesare said DeWalt's experience in the security space will prove invaluable as ForeScout looks to follow the same trajectory to growth that FireEye has seen in recent years.

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"It's pretty much the exact same [path] that we want to get ForeScout to [follow]," DeCesare said. "I'm absolutely thrilled about it."

ForeScout has been on a rapid growth path, with more than $100 million in annual revenue and growing at more than 50 percent year over year. The company's offerings link together disparate security solutions for threat intelligence, visibility and automated policy enforcement across a client's network, endpoints and applications.

DeWalt joins a board that includes current and former leaders of some of the leading vendors in the security industry, including DeCesare himself, who was president of Intel Security (formerly McAfee), as well as former Symantec president and CEO Enrique Salem.

"That collective brain trust is very powerful," DeCesare said. "Dave is only going to add to that."

DeCesare said DeWalt will take a "very active role" as a strategic board member for ForeScout, including insight into product direction, market entry and more. In particular, DeCesare said the partnership will drive a "much bigger and more formalized relationship with FireEye in the future," including a joint go-to-market approach with it and other vendors.

DeWalt also drove one of the largest IPOs in IT and security history with FireEye's IPO in 2013, which valued the company around $2.3 billion. That experience will "absolutely" be critical as ForeScout evaluates its own IPO, DeCesare said.

"We would eventually like to go public, but there has to be investors that want to invest with us at a fair price when we want to go to market," DeCesare said. "That's a huge advantage for me with Dave. ... To have Dave with that experience, who understands my space, understands the industry and certainly knows how to take a company public is certainly a huge asset."

Dan Burns, CEO of Accuvant-FishNet Security, soon to be Optiv Security, said he has seen ForeScout make some interesting moves to position itself to take advantage of a revitalized market for network access control.

Burns said he expects the addition of DeWalt, who he said has a "pretty incredible set of skills" and "high level of experience," will only help accelerate the company's growth. In particular, Burns highlighted DeWalt's experience, long history with DeCesare (the two worked together at McAfee as well as Documentum), and growing partnership between the two companies.

"When you look at creating a solid board, you want members that have that experience and can bring things to the table to help your company," Burns said. "Dave has done a lot of great things and having him on the board can only help ForeScout to grow."