The Mountain View, California-based Symantec said Sunday it had reached an agreement to buy the Tempe, Arizona-based LifeLock for $24 per share, or for a 16% premium to the Friday closing share price of $20.75. The shares have jumped 13.4% to $23.53 in pre-market trading.
"With the combination of Norton and LifeLock, we will be able to deliver comprehensive cyber defense for consumers," said Symantec CEO Greg Clark. "This acquisition marks the transformation of the consumer security industry from malware protection to the broader category of Digital Safety for consumers."
The acquisition of an identity theft protection player would mark further expansion for Symantec -- whose signature offering is the antivirus software Norton -- into the increasingly sought-after cybersecurity business, following its June acquisition of Blue Coat Systems. It would also expand its reach into consumer clients.
The cybersecurity market is estimated to expand by a compound annual growth rate of 9.8% from 2015 to 2020 to $170 billion, according to MarketsandMarkets. For 2017, Symantec expects revenue of between $4.04 billion and $4.12 billion.
The Symantec acquisition also represents the latest victory for activist investor Elliott Management LLC's Paul Singer. The hedge fund in June launched an activist campaign at LifeLock, noting in a securities filing at the time that its managers had "initiated a dialogue" with the company's management and board on opportunities to enhance shareholder value.