SUNNYVALE, Calif. ( TheStreet) -- Earlier this year, Fortinet (FTNT) was a relatively little-known security company, quietly duking it with security software's biggest names. Fast forward a few months, and Fortinet is suddenly being touted as a potential acquisition target for Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), IBM (IBM), Dell (DELL) and Oracle (ORCL).
So, what is Fortinet, and why is the company such hot property?
One of the first firms to offer an all-in-one approach to network security, Fortinet, which competes with Cisco (CSCO), Check Point Systems (CHKP) and McAfee (MFE), touts its FortiGate appliance as a sort of Swiss Army knife for network security: it combines firewall, antivirus, VPN and intrusion prevention systems.
"We like that Fortinet helps to simplify an overly complex network security landscape," said Jayson Noland, an analyst at R.W. Baird, in an email to
TheStreet. "Fortinet's concept of a Universal Threat management (UTM) appliance was well ahead of its time -- Fortinet also offers performance advantages given the
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