Symantec has been approached by a pair of private equity firms seeking to acquire its consumer business for $16.4bn, according to the Wall Street Journal.
London-based Permira Holdings has teamed up with US-based Advent International to offer a deal that would value the company at between $26 and $27 a share - valuing the organisation at $16.4bn, people familiar with the matter told the paper.
The deal would include its Norton antivirus software and VPN service along with its LifeLock identity theft protection services.
Last month saw Symantec split in two as it sold its enterprise division for $10.7bn to US chip maker Broadcom.
The PE buyout wouldn't affect this deal, the sources told the WSJ, but they added that a deal to buy the entire company would be more tax efficient for Symantec's shareholders.
It is unclear whether the PE firms would buy Symantec whole and then move forward with the Broadcom acquisition, or wait for that deal to go through before buying the consumer unit - or whether a deal will even be struck, the paper added.
A month prior to the Broadcom sale being formalised, Bloomberg reported that former Symantec CEO Greg Clark had joined forces with Permira and Advent to mount a competing bid against the chip maker for the cybersecurity vendor.
Advent International and Permira both declined to comment to CRN on the story. Symantec did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Symantec's shares rose as much as seven per cent after news of the potential buyout broke.
Its consumer segment contributed over 50 per cent to the company's $1.2bn turnover for its most recent quarter, which ended on 30 June.
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