NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- From Intel's ( INTC) $7.7 billion deal for McAfee ( MFE) to Hewlett-Packard ( HPQ) and Dell's ( DELL) ongoing bidding war for 3Par ( PAR), tech M&A is back with a vengeance. So who's going to be next? Networking, security and storage are three of the hottest areas today, according to experts, with Riverbed ( RVBD), ArcSight ( ARST) and CommVault ( CVLT) all in the spotlight.
After a tough 2009, companies like IBM ( IBM), HP, Dell and Intel now see a window of M&A opportunity, particularly given renewed uncertainty about the broader economy. "I think that companies get the sense that we're not fully recovered," Brenon Daly, an analyst at The451Group told TheStreet. "Before we get deals knocked off by a double-dip recession or a mellowing in the economy, companies want to get deals pushed through." With growing cash hoards, it's hardly surprising that some of tech's biggest names are driving M&A, according to Bill Soward, CEO of software specialist Adaptive Planning. "There's no question that this cash balance thing is becoming quite a challenge for these big companies," he told TheStreet, explaining that shareholders want to see cash put to good use. "I think that there are also some competitive pressures in play -- people are trying to redefine their business." Read on for more on potential M&A targets Riverbed, ArcSight and CommVault: