• Cybersecurity company said valued at more than $2 billion
  • Optiv working with Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley on offering

Optiv Security LLC, the cybersecurity company backed by Blackstone Group LP that’s preparing to go public, will explore a sale at the same time, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The Denver-based company could be valued at more than $2 billion, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private. Optiv is working with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley to prepare for a possible initial public offering as early as the second half, people familiar with the matter said this month.

Optiv could draw interest from strategic buyers and other private equity firms, one of the people said. A number of sponsors have chosen to exit IPO-bound portfolio companies through a sale after pursuing what’s known as a dual-track process, amid stock market volatility and the slowest start for U.S. IPOs since the recession.

In August, SunGard Data Systems Inc., which was owned by a group of firms including Silver Lake Management, Blackstone and KKR & Co., agreed to be bought by Fidelity National Information Services Inc. in a deal valued at $9.1 billion. It had filed to go public in June 2015. Interactive Data Corp., backed by Silver Lake and Warburg Pincus, agreed in October to be acquired by Intercontinental Exchange Inc. for $5.2 billion, after filing for an IPO.

In November, Petco Animal Supplies Inc., backed by a group including TPG and Leonard Green & Partners, said it agreed to a takeover by CVC Capital Partners and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, in a deal worth about $4.6 billion. It had filed a prospectus in August.

A representative for Blackstone declined to comment, while a representative for Optiv didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Identity Software

Optiv cybersecurity software includes identity access management, which helps ensure only the right people gain access to information and applications. The company is no stranger to deals. This month, Optiv completed a takeover of Advancive LLC, according to a statement that didn’t disclose financial terms.

Optiv was created out of a merger of two cybersecurity companies, Blackstone-backed Accuvant Inc. and Investcorp-backed FishNet Security Inc., which was completed last year. Blackstone, the world’s biggest private equity firm, maintained a majority stake in the combined company, with Bahrain-based Investcorp keeping a minority interest. Together, Accuvant and FishNet had pro forma revenues of $1.5 billion in 2014, according to Moody’s Investors Service.

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