Symantec play for Splunk is said to have ended after review

Register now

(Bloomberg) -- Symantec Corp. held talks to acquire Splunk Inc. but called them off after reviewing the analytics software company’s finances, people familiar with the matter said.

The data-security provider saw San Francisco-based Splunk as overvalued by the market based on Symantec’s estimates, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions were private. It isn’t clear what specific issues caused Symantec to step back.

Symantec Chief Executive Officer Greg Clark told Bloomberg this month that Splunk was an attractive acquisition target for a strategic buyer. He didn’t say at the time whether it would be a good fit for Symantec. Clark also said Symantec was open to doing a large acquisition but didn’t disclose any talks to buy Splunk, which has a market value of $9.4 billion.

Symantec, with a market capitalization of $20.6 billion, has grown since last year through several large acquisitions. It acquired Blue Coat Inc. for $4.65 billion in a deal that brought Clark, previously Blue Coat’s CEO, to the company. It later announced a deal to buy LifeLock Inc. for $2.3 billion. Symantec also looked at buying FireEye Inc. before settling on Blue Coat.

A spokeswoman for Mountain View, California-based Symantec declined to comment. A representative of Splunk didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

--With assistance from Joshua Fineman

Bloomberg News