The Work

March 13, 2012 6:25 PM

Dewey, Kirkland Lead on Dell's $1.25 Billion Network Security Purchase

Posted by Tom Huddleston Jr.

Dude, Dell is getting a network security provider.

The computer maker said Tuesday that it has agreed to acquire SonicWall from an investor group headed by private equity firm Thoma Bravo. 

Though terms of the deal were not disclosed, The New York Times, citing unnamed sources, reports that Dell, the world's third-largest producer of personal computer behind Hewlett-Packard and Lenovo, will pay about $1.25 billion for SonicWall.

By acquiring SonicWall, which provides data protection and network security services to businesses, Dell would expand its offerings into secure-remote access, e-mail protection, and data backup and recovery services. The deal is expected to close within 45 days, according to Thoma Bravo.

In 2010, the private equity firm led a group of investors in the $717 million takeover of SonicWall. As The Am Law reported at the time, the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan was among the consortium's members.

Dewey & LeBoeuf is advising Dell, with a team led by M&A partner Jane Ross. Other Dewey lawyers working on the deal include technology transactions partner Robert Finkel, compensation and benefits partners Domnick Bozzetti and Margaret Keane, and tax partner Arthur Hazlitt. Former O'Melveny & Myers partner Lawrence Tu is Dell's general counsel.

Dewey has represented Dell on a number of past deals, including the company's acquisition last summer of ethernet equipment maker Force10 Networks.

For its part, SonicWall turned to Kirkland & Ellis as outside counsel on the transaction. The firm advised  Thoma Bravo in the 2010 acquisition of SonicWall. Corporate partner Gerald Nowak took the reins for Kirkland on both deals. He is joined on the current deal by corporate partner Corey Fox.

Meanwhile, the Ontario pension fund hired its own outside counsel, with Weil, Gotshal & Manges corporate chair Michael Aiello advising.

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