Cybersecurity continues to be a major focus of businesses, governments and individuals as the global economy pushes forward into the digital age. High-profile intrusions like Colonial Pipeline, Kaseya and JBS have proven that no one is safe from motivated threat actors. There has been a massive demand for both cybersecurity professionals and solutions — i.e., job openings — to combat the challenges created by such malevolent efforts as ransomware, denial-of-service attacks and phishing emails.
According to Cyber Seek, a job tracking database supported by the U.S. Commerce Department, there are nearly 500,000 cybersecurity job openings. According to Cybersecurity Ventures, the global spend on cybersecurity will grow from $262.4 billion in 2020 to $458.9 billion in 2025. Organizations that are addressing such key cybersecurity segments as identity management, cloud security, zero trust and automated threat detection and response are often demonstrating robust growth and attractive valuations in today‘s climate.
The mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and capital markets activity for the cybersecurity space validates the importance of this industry segment to the global economy. S&P Global Market Intelligence reports that the total number of annual information security transactions was up for a fifth year in a row, representing 162 deals in 2020 for a total M&A deal volume of $18 billion. Furthermore, the increasing trend of special purpose acquisition companies (SPAC) — publicly traded companies with no operations but with capital to spend — acquiring cybersecurity firms is further evidence of the capital market’s interest in this space. Examples of recent SPAC capital market events include IronNet’s combination with LGL Systems Acquisition Corp. and the recent IPO of CYBA, an entity with the sole purpose of acquiring businesses in the cybersecurity industry, on the London Stock Exchange.
Finally, the above list of representative 2021 cybersecurity transactions offers additional confirmation of the extreme interest from strategic buyers and financial sponsor communities in the lucrative cybersecurity market. There is currently no end in sight for the cybersecurity M&A and capital markets momentum.
– The Bundy Group is a CFE Media content partner.