Buyout firm, Francisco Partners, and the private equity arm of activist hedge fund, Elliott Management Corp, have finalised the acquisition of Dell Software Group and the spin-out of SonicWall and Quest as independent businesses.
Four years after buying Quest Software for $US2.36 billion and SonicWall for $US1.2 billion, Dell's software sell-off comes at a time of significant change for the vendor, following the completion of Dell's acquisition of EMC.
Terms of the deal will see Dell Technologies continue to resell SonicWall’s entire product portfolio, as it has done since before the acquisition of EMC.
Francisco Partner co-founder and chief executive, Dipanjan Deb, said the acquisition will better enable SonicWall to continue to grow its presence in the cybersecurity market and defend against the “explosive growth” of new threats.
Deb said that Quest will take a "fresh look" at opportunities to best serve customers across diverse product solution areas by expanding its routes to market across the business.
“Quest has a long and successful software heritage, and a fiercely loyal community of employees, customers, and partners," Deb said.
"We look forward to this new chapter for Quest and are confident the team will continue innovating on behalf of customers, while driving profitable growth for the company."
As part of the spin-out, SonicWall appointed cybersecurity and networking veteran, Bill Conner, as its president and chief executive.
Connor joins the company after heading up Silent Circle and Entrust as chief executive, as well as Data Networks president and president of enterprise networks at Nortel Networks.
“We are in the midst of a cybersecurity arms race," he added.
"As a standalone SonicWall brand, we can act even more deftly and quickly to serve channel partners by offering products and services second to none.
"SonicWall customers are protected by one of the most advanced tools on the market, the cloud-based Capture Advanced Threat Protection Service.
"We are continuing our commitment to product innovation to serve our customers and invest in our partners who operate as an extension of the SonicWall team."
According to the vendor, the company has achieved multiple milestones within the year including growing its partners by 20 per cent.
Quest will be led by chairman and chief executive, Jeff Hawn, who brings more than 15 years of experience as a software company executive.
Previously, Hawn was chairman and CEO of Vertafore, a software provider for the insurance industry, and prior to that was chairman and CEO of the Attachmate Group.
Hawn said Quest will focus on expanding its IT and cloud management portfolio solutions to include SaaS solutions for the cloud era, in addition to developing its software solutions, both on-premises and SaaS.
“As companies continue to embrace business transformation, particularly through adopting cloud-centric technology models, they need a trusted partner through this critical journey," he said.
"In relaunching Quest, our products will be purpose-built and backed by a level of support and services that will help our customers and partners succeed.
"We’ll take the best of what made Quest a market maker for the past 30 years and infuse a renewed focus on security and cloud."