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Originally Posted By Steven Burke on April 20, 2015

Defense contractor Raytheon is mounting an all out offensive to become a force in the fast-growing commercial cybersecurity market with the planned $1.9 billion acquisition of security software maker Websense.

Waltham, Mass.-based Raytheon announced a definitive agreement Monday with private equity firm Vista Equity Partners — which bought Websense in June 2013 — to acquire Websense and form a new joint venture made up of Websense and Raytheon Cyber Products.

CRN last week was the first to report that Raytheon had agreed to acquire Websense, which has 2,200 channel partners, reporting Friday that the deal was going to be announced Monday.

Raytheon said it will own an 80.3 percent stake of the joint venture with Vista Equity Partners, with $600 million of the $1.9 billion cash deal coming in the form of an “intercompany loan” to the joint venture.

Raytheon said it will contribute to the venture the assets of Raytheon Cyber Products and related intellectual property, which is valued at $400 million.

[highlight type=”one”]Bob Venero, CEO of Future Tech, a Holbrook, N.Y.-based Websense partner, said the acquisition sets up the Raytheon-Websense combination to capture significant commercial share in the security market.[/highlight]

[highlight type=”one”]”This is a very smart play by Raytheon to be a market leader in the commercial security market,” said Venero. “Raytheon is growing its commercial and government business, and this deal is right in its wheelhouse. Websense has great security products, and the power of Raytheon is going to help them capture additional share.”[/highlight]

[highlight type=”one”]With security threats and breaches on the rise, Venero said, Future Tech’s security business is continuing to grow.[/highlight]

In a letter to customers and partners on the Websense website, Websense CEO John McCormack said the new organization’s goal is to become the leading security vendor.

McCormack said the joint venture sets “a new standard” in the security market with both defense-grade cybersecurity from Raytheon and commercial technology from Websense.

“We are combining Raytheon’s unique expertise in protecting critical assets with Websense’s proven ability to defend against advanced cyberattacks and data theft,” said McCormack.