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MSSP Herjavec Group To Be Purchased By Apax Partners

Being acquired by Apax Partners will allow Herjavec Group to hire more threat and identity personnel and bolster the company’s identity and Security Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR) offerings.

Apax Partners has agreed to buy a majority stake in Herjavec Group to accelerate international expansion and advance the company’s identity and security management platforms.

The Toronto-based managed security service provider, No. 100 on the 2020 CRN Solution Provider 500, said being acquired by Apax Partners will give Herjavec Group more threat and identity resources and bolster the company’s identity and Security Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR) offerings. Founder and “Shark Tank” star Robert Herjavec will remain a significant stakeholder and CEO.

“This acquisition and the growth funding that results is a testament to our entire team, and to our loyal customer base who has entrusted us with their mission critical assets,” Herjavec said in a statement. “I am excited for this next phase in our growth trajectory as we continue to earn their trust.”

[Related: ‘Shark Tank’ Star Herjavec: Broadcom-Symantec Deal Is A Dinosaur ‘Buying Another Dinosaur’]

Herjavec Group was founded in 2003, employs 341 people, and is one of the largest pure-play security solution providers in the world behind Optiv and GuidePoint Security. Herjavec has been the company’s sole owner for the past 17 years, and the company scaled in a sole proprietor model, which is almost unheard of in this marketplace, according to Erin McLean, SVP of marketing and human resources.

“We realize there are opportunities to further scale with funding,” McLean told CRN. “This is a very exciting time in our growth story.”

From an identity perspective, McLean said Herjavec is looking to bolster its team in the United Kingdom, India and the United States and add additional expertise around SailPoint, CyberArk and Ping. And as far as Herjavec’s threat business is concerned, McLean said the company is looking to add more entry-level and senior threat analysts to boost the company’s threat hunting, threat modeling and SOAR practices.

Herjavec Group already had two acquisitions in the works, but with the infusion of capital from Apax, McLean said the company is now looking to carry out four or five acquisitions this year. The deals should help Herjavec move into new geographies and expand capabilities around the company’s identity and access management platform as well as its managed detection and response services, McLean said.

And as Herjavec Group shifts from an analytics platform to a SOAR platform, McLean said the company is looking to expand its workflows and playbooks around how the business automates for customers. Herjavec Group’s customers and internal operations will benefit from efficiency and scale as well as augmented threat intelligence as the company builds out its own threat platform, according to McLean.

London-based private equity Apax Partners first got into the cybersecurity space with its $830 million acquisition of Sophos in May 2010, and remained majority owner until the Oxford, U.K.-based platform security vendor went public in a June 2015 initial public offering that valued Sophos at $1.6 billion. Then in December 2019, Apax agreed to purchase Louisville, Colo.-based cybersecurity advisory firm Coalfire.

“We are excited to partner with Robert [Herjavec] and team as we look to drive the business forward, investing in continued product innovation and growth acceleration while maintaining the company’s number one priority: its customer centricity,” Apax Partners Partner Rohan Haldea said in a statement.

From a technology standpoint, Herjavec said his company has made significant strides in offering a truly threat-centric managed service. Further investment in Herjavec’s identity and SOAR platforms under Apax means the company won’t be relying on commercially available threat feeds to support its customers like so many other companies do today, according to Herjavec.

“We are building a leading platform with open source, commercial, government and HG [Herjavec Group] engagement-specific information to support our global customer base,” Herjavec wrote in a letter posted to the company’s website Thursday.

Meanwhile, Herjavec said the company’s international expansion under Apax will broaden the company’s intelligence across verticals and geographies, allowing customers to be served when and where they need it. The company focused solely on Canada in its first dozen years, entered the United States in 2015, then went into the United Kingdom via acquisition, and today also operates in India.

Additionally, Herjavec said adding more threat and identity personnel will allow the company to drive additional knowledge and industry-leading experience in specialized areas that are critical to supporting customers.

“It’s easy to say that this acquisition won’t change your experience with the Herjavec Group,” Herjavec said. “I struggled with that thought, because in fact, it should. It should make it better … It’s up to us to show you the tangible benefits, and let me be the first to reinforce, I couldn’t be more excited, or up to the challenge.”

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