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Daily Digest: August 25, 2008  
Content Control, Compliance, Archiving, E-Discovery, & Data Leak Prevention

Kazeon Extends eDiscovery Collection, Processing and Analysis with Legal Hold and Laptop/Desktop Product
Version 3.1 of Kazeon's Information Server IS1200-ECS Introduces Both Target and In-Place Legal Hold, KazHold; Offers Unique Agent-less Collection and Analysis for Remote/Mobile Systems

StoredIQ eDiscovery Appliance 4.6 Increases Functionality Leadership with Expanded Platform Support and Enhanced eDiscovery Features
Deeper eDiscovery Processing Capabilities Improve Efficiency and Lower Costs for In-House Corporate Legal Teams

Messaging & Collaboration

Kaspersky Lab presents Kaspersky Anti-Virus 2009 and Kaspersky Internet Security 2009  

Survey of Archiving Products -- Let us know what you think about the archiving products you use. If you add your own data, we will send you a summary of the findings. The survey just started--great if you can help get this off the ground by contributing your own policies

Survey of Retention Policies -- See the retention policies for various organizations here. If you add your own data, we will send you a summary of the findings

Abaca Virtual Email Protection Gateway Achieves VMware Virtual Appliance Validation
Abaca's Virtual Appliance Supports Hosted-Class and Hypervisor-Class Product Lines

CommonTime Expands Capabilities for Lotus Notes Mobile Professionals with Support for the New Treo Pro Smartphone  

Tata Teleservices Maharashtra Limited Launches Instachat Mobile Conferencing Service Powered by Kodiak Networks
First CDMA Mobile Carrier to Offer Instant Group Conferencing Solution

Blog Item(s)

Proofpoint Buys Fortiva

25 AUGUST 2008

On June 24, 2008, Proofpoint announced it bought Fortiva.

Buyer Proofpoint Background

  • Business values to customers are:
    • Users waste much less time having to process spam email, or being distracted by email-borne viruses.
    • Helps the organization comply with laws and regulations limiting the types of communication it has with outsiders.
    • Helps the organization prevent other types of information loss that could be damaging, such as the transfer of intellectual property, or of customer lists.
  • Technology mainly provides:
    • Email-based spam, phishing, and virus control, and policy-based encryption.
    • Filtering of outbound information to prevent data leaks. This covers many types of content, including email and attachments, webmail, files, FTP, instant messaging, and blog postings.
  • Embodied as customer-premises software, customer-premises appliance, SaaS.
  • Majority of products have the same code base across customer-premises software, customer-premises appliance, customer-premises virtual device, SaaS.
  • Founded in 2002.
  • Web site is at www.proofpoint.com.

Seller Fortiva Background

  • Business values to customers are:
    • Lets users of MS Exchange have larger and faster-performing mailboxes.
    • Allows users to keep copies of past emails and provides easy access to them.
    • Organizations can respond more effectively to litigation, by making it easier to access past emails.
    • Saves past email as required by laws and regulations.
  • Main service offering is Fortiva Archiving Suite. Email archiving, lots of e-discovery services, storage management. Typical cost is $1-$2/mailbox/month.
  • Company also offers SmartStore. This is a subset of the Archiving Suite, with more limited e-discovery capabilities. Cost is typically about $1/month.
  • Services mainly aimed at companies with 1,000 mailboxes or more.
  • Main competitors are customer-premises-installed products: Symantec/Vault, EMC/Legato, CA.
  • Main competitive strengths:
    • Nice encryption architecture, addressing customers’ privacy concerns.
    • High-performance search, using a modern distributed search architecture.
    • Tight integration with the customer’s internal systems. In particular, there’s tight integration with Active Directory, so users sign on with normal ID and password, and policy definition can use AD groups and distribution lists.
  • Around a third of revenues come from OEM arrangement with MSN; around a third come from OEM arrangement with MessageLabs; the rest is direct sales.
  • See also the technical review of Fortiva by Ferris Research.
  • Founded in 2004.
  • Website is at www.fortiva.com.

Benefits for Buyer Proofpoint

  • An attractive, and natural, enhancement of Proofpoint's offering.
  • Proofpoint's data leak prevention technology addresses compliance concerns. Compliance has much to do with archiving, so Fortiva helps Proofpoint build a stronger compliance story.
  • Proofpoint's content scanning is also valuable for e-discovery; here again, Fortiva's archiving and e-discovery capabilities help Proofpoint build a strong compliance story.
  • Proofpoint's technology has been located at the Internet boundary. Fortiva helps it integrate more closely with internal systems. In particular, it helps Proofpoint apply policy within an organization, not just at the boundary.

Benefits for Seller Fortiva

  • Solves cash problem.
  • Gets sales leverage. It gets access to large corporations via Proofpoint's direct sales and support organization and its channel. It also gets access to Proofpoint's international market.

Seller Fortiva: Valuation Considerations

  • Revenues: not disclosed. Ferris Research estimates current revenues at $5M/year.
  • Not profitable.
  • 40 employees.
  • About 250 paying customers.
  • $17M raised to date by Fortiva:
  • McLean Watson Capital invested $1M in late 2004.
    • Ventures West and McLean Watson Capital invested a further $4M in April 2005.
    • A Series A round closed in September 2005, bringing total equity raised to $8M, with funding from Cargill Ventures, Ventures West, and McLean Watson Capital.
    • Financing since this time appears to have been bridging loans.
  • Fortiva was unable to raise further money, either by equity or loans. Thus it was forced to find a buyer.

Terms of Deal

  • Not disclosed.
  • Ferris Research preliminary estimates are: $20M deal; price/revenue ratio of 4:1.

Comparable Deals

Buyer/Seller Date Price
Dell/MessageOne 2/08 $155M
Autonomy/Zantaz 7/07 $375M
Google/Postini 7/07 $625M
Veritas-Symantec/KVS 9/04 $225M

Possible Negatives/Concerns About the Merger

  • An important Proofpoint strength is the integrated, single point of administration of the spam/virus/malware/DLP technology. However, Fortiva’s archiving and e-discovery code base is entirely separate, and will need to be integrated. That’s tough to do, and is likely to detract from the single-point-of-administration strength.
  • Proofpoint is building a content control story. This is intrinsically one that must cover many types of electronic information, from different protocols (e.g., IM, HTTP, FTP, print streams, file server I/O) to different types of data at rest (e.g., MS Office documents, PDFs). The company has started in this direction, with its data loss prevention capabilities. But still, much of its skills turn around email, and filtering at the boundary. Building a full multiple-content-types story that works within an organization is a major technical challenge.
  • Fortiva’s archiving is an attractive enhancement to the SaaS offering. These capabilities aren’t, however, provided by Proofpoint’s customer-premises offerings.

Other Ferris Research Comments

  • Total funding received to date by Proofpoint: $86M. In February 2008, Proofpoint raised $28M for acquisitions (led by DAG Ventures); it got a roughly $300M valuation.
  • 50% of Fortiva revenues go through partners. Microsoft Online Services is the largest OEM.
  • Google’s acquisition of Postini helps validate the acquisition of Fortiva by Proofpoint. Postini’s archiving is an attractive part of its spam/virus SaaS offering.
  • Appears to be a sound investment for Proofpoint. The cost should quickly be justified by the incremental revenues alone; the other benefits come “for free.”
  • Proofpoint has no immediate plans to integrate the different code bases. That seems strange.
  • Fortiva has good technology. With hindsight, perhaps it should have invested more in marketing. Some people, albeit not your present interlocutor, suggest that its timing was too early.

Got Additional Relevant Information?

  • We're interested in all input, especially on the price paid, Fortiva’s revenue history, the extent of Fortiva’s bank debt, and the return for common and preferred stockholders. And, of course, any errors.
  • Contact David Ferris on +1 415 367 3436, or david.ferris@ferris.com. Unless you indicate otherwise, we’ll assume all communications are confidential.

... David Ferris



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About Ferris Research

Ferris Research studies messaging, and the control of electronic information. More specifically, we help IT staff evaluate and implement products and services that:

  • Provide messaging and collaborative technologies
  • Archive electronic information
  • Ensure compliance with corporate policy, industry regulations, and laws
  • Facilitate e-discovery, and contain its costs
  • Reduce the dangers of information leaks

Email is the most important type of electronic information that requires control today. Other important types include instant messages, Sharepoint teamspaces, images, voice, video, and miscellaneous desktop files.

We've been in business since 1990--longer than any other analyst firm in our field:

  • Clients include 300 of the world's 1,000 largest organizations, and computer vendors from the largest corporations to small startups
  • While other analysts have come and gone, we've published more than 200 formal reports and 1,100 short bulletins
  • Our news service covers more than 2,000 highly specialized announcements annually
  • We have nine experts in our research team, sharing many decades of experience in our core competencies

In short, our technology and industry depth helps you understand today's products, where they've come from and where they're going.

Have news you want to share with us or product or interest area that you would like us to cover? Send press releases to releases@ferris.com.

Copyright © Ferris Research 2008.


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