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Cybersecurity software firm McAfee files to go public

San Jose, California

CYBERSECURITY software maker McAfee Corp has filed to go public, adding to the roster of companies rushing to cash in on a hot market for US initial public offerings.

The San Jose, California-based company listed the size of the offering as US$100 million in a filing Monday with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The amount is a placeholder that will likely change.

McAfee's planned offering is part of a software IPO boom this year. Software companies account for US$12.8 billion of the US$102 billion raised this year on US exchanges, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Shares of those newly public software companies have gained 78 per cent on an weighted average basis, the data show.

McAfee was previously a unit of Intel Corp, which bought the software maker in a US$7.7 billion deal that closed in 2011.

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In 2016, Intel announced that it had signed a deal to transfer a 51 per cent stake in the business to TPG for US$1.1 billion. The transaction valued the spun-off company at US$4.2 billion, including debt.

The chipmaker argued that security was becoming increasingly important to computer users and that integrating security functionality into its processors would add to their value.

That high-level justification for the purchase was never translated into practical applications which enhanced Intel's main business. The unit continued on primarily as a retail software vendor not connected tightly to its parent's offerings.

TPG and Thoma Bravo are listed as McAfee's backers in Monday's prospectus.

For the 26 weeks ended June 27, McAfee had a profit of US$31 million on revenue of US$1.4 billion, according to its filing. The company said it lost US$146 million on revenue of US$1.29 billion during the comparable period last year. BLOOMBERG

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