In a rather unexpected move we learned that Intel Corp will be buying security software maker McAfee for $7.7 billion to capitalize on rising demand for better safeguards for laptops, smartphones and tablets.
Intel will pay $48 per share in cash for McAfee in its biggest acquisition ever. The price represents a 60 percent premium to McAfee's Wednesday closing price. The pact is the latest in a steady stream of technology deals, including Dell Inc's (DELL.O) $1.3 billion purchase of storage company 3PAR Inc (PAR.N) earlier this week.
The McAfee deal, which caught many analysts by surprise because its marries a chipmaker and a software maker, underscores Intel's determination to continuing expanding beyond the PC market to hot businesses like mobile devices and smartphones.
But, for the moment, the biggest advantage in the deal may be Intel's ability to sell McAfee's software to PC customers. Intel supplies roughly 80 percent of the microprocessors used in PCs.