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Thoma Bravo Clearly Courting Cybersecurity Market with ForgeRock Acquisition

Thoma Bravo’s newest acquisition could be a sign that the identity management market is going to become a major focus for many private equity firms.

ForgeRock, a cybersecurity identity firm, recently made a $2.3 billion deal with Thoma Bravo – and it’s just one of many cybersecurity firms that the private equity giant has purchased over the past year. In April, Thoma Bravo acquired SailPoint, another identity protection company, for $6.9 billion. And in August, it snatched up Ping Identity for an additional $2.8 billion.

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While ForgeRock has raised more than $230 million over the course or its twelve years in business, its stock price was down 9% this year. With the acquisition, however, the price shot up almost 50%, which Chief Executive Officer Fran Rosch says is simply a validation of the platform rather than a validation of the purchase.

The additional funding will give ForgeRock the opportunity to expand identity-centric cybersecurity platforms, something that Thoma Bravo is very interested in. Chip Virnig, Partner at Thoma Bravo, says this is hugely important in the cybersecurity world, but it is unclear how the company’s approach to identity and access management (IAM) will look across its new companies.

Cyberattacks are growing more common across apps, social media platforms, and general online usage, says Jack Poller, a Senior Analyst at IT research firm ESG Global. Despite the safety precautions being taken by banks, schools, and other large institutions, data breaches are more common than experts have ever before seen– a 68% increase from 2020, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC).

“Securing an organization’s identities with strong, phishing-resistant authentication such as multifactor authentication (MFA) or password-less authentication methods can prevent account takeover and other identity-related attacks and reduce the attack surface,” Poller said in an interview with VentureBeat.

Thoma Bravo is obviously hoping its recent cybersecurity investments will allow it to capitalize on the growing threat of cyberattacks.