Israeli-founded Imperva is snapped up by France’s Thales in $3.6b cybersecurity deal

Co-founded by tech entrepreneur Shlomo Kramer in 2002, Imperva is a data and application cybersecurity firm that operates an R&D center in Israel with 500 employees

Sharon Wrobel is a tech reporter for The Times of Israel.

Illustrative. Cybersecurity protection. (Thinkhubstudio via iStock by Getty Images)
Illustrative. Cybersecurity protection. (Thinkhubstudio via iStock by Getty Images)

French aerospace and defense electronics group Thales has inked an agreement to buy Israeli-founded cybersecurity firm Imperva Inc. in a deal worth $3.6 billion.

Thales said Tuesday that it is acquiring Imperva from private equity firm Thoma Bravo, which bought the cybersecurity firm for $2.1 billion back in 2018. Imperva creates solutions that proactively identify, evaluate and eliminate current and emerging threats to critical workloads, including web apps, and data wherever they reside in organizations, whether in the cloud, on-premises, or in hybrid environments.

The data and application cybersecurity firm was founded in 2002 by tech entrepreneur Shlomo Kramer, the co-founder of another cybersecurity firm, Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. Other co-founders were serial entrepreneurs Mickey Boodaei, who founded Trusteer, acquired by IBM, and Amichai Shulman, co-founder of Israeli cybersecurity startup Nokod Security.

“The acquisition of Imperva marks a major milestone in Thales’ cybersecurity strategy,” said Thales CEO Patrice Caine. “With this acquisition, we are seizing a unique opportunity to accelerate our cybersecurity capabilities and are taking an important step towards our ambition to build a world-class global cybersecurity integrated player, providing a comprehensive portfolio of products and services.”

About 35 percent of Fortune 100 companies in areas of financial services, telecommunications, energy, healthcare, retail and e-commerce use Imperva’s cybersecurity solutions. The firm says its application security platform blocks 1 million attacks from bad actors every minute and prevents more than 22 billion attacks a month.

Headquartered in San Mateo, California, Imperva has more than 1,400 employees working at 17 offices around the world. In Israel, the company operates an R&D center and employs about 500 workers at its offices in Tel Aviv and Rehovot.

“We believe that, together, we can deliver greater product innovation and efficiency through disruptive solutions, while helping to simplify the greatest security challenges facing organizations today: protecting digital identities, applications, APIs and data in any environment and any industry,” said Imperva CEO Pam Murphy.

Thales, a supplier of civil avionics, satellites and identity systems, said the acquisition will add about $500 million of revenue and significantly expand its data and application security offerings. The combination of the two companies is expected to generate about $110 million of pre-tax run-rate synergies, including $50 million of cost synergies and $60 million linked to revenue synergies, the French group said.

Thales invests close to €4 billion ($4.4 billion) a year in R&D in key areas such as quantum technologies, edge computing, 6G and cybersecurity. The firm has 77,000 employees in 68 countries. In 2022, it generated sales of €17.6 billion ($19.4 billion).

The deal is expected to close by the beginning of 2024, pending the completion of antitrust and regulatory approvals.

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