Citing people familiar with the matter, the Journal said that Websense is exploring a sale with the help of investment bank Qatalyst Partners, which also worked on HP's (HPQ) acquisition of Palm and EMC's (EMC) purchase of Data Domain.
Websense could command a price tag of around $1 billion, according to the sources, who explained that the firm may decide against a sale if offers do not meet its expectations.
Websense shares climbed $2.42, or 11.85%, to close at $22.85 on Wednesday, reversing the broader retreat in tech stocks that saw the Nasdaq lose 1.89% over the session.Rumors of Websense as an attractive acquisition target are not new, and a deal would continue the recent spate of security M&A that saw Intel (INTC) spend $7.7 billion on McAfee and HP grab ArcSight for $1.7 billion. HP, which rolled out its long-term strategy earlier this week, has been touted as a possible WebSense suitor. The tech bellwether is expected to make more acquisitions in both software and security, particularly after HP CEO Leo Apotheker highlighted the security challenges of cloud computing during an event in San Francisco earlier this week. Websense, which has a market cap of $928 million, sells software for securing Web, email, mobile and social networking data. The Symantec (SYMC) rival lists Microsoft (MSFT) as a partner. Neither Websense nor Qatalyst has yet responded to TheStreet's request for comment on this story. --Written by James Rogers in New York. >To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/jamesjrogers. >To submit a news tip, send an email to: email@example.com.
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.
- Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV