The value of merger and acquisition deals in the cyber security space touched $10 billion globally in the first half of the year, a significant 70% jump in comparison to the entire 2010 calendar year, according to global consultancy firm PwC.
The report further said that growth momentum in the cyber security market will continue in the future as well.
The cyber security market comprises companies that provide products or services for defensive and offensive applications across the IT, telecom and industrial domains.
According to PwC, "In the first half of 2011, there were 37 deals accounting for $10.2 billion in deal value, representing a 70% increase compared to the full year 2010."
The deal value was primarily driven by Intel's $7.8 billion acquisition of McAfee, which was completed in February, 2011.
"Deal activity in cyber security is expected to continue to grow given the fragmentation of the market and the attractive growth outlook. Technology and IT companies are making acquisitions to differentiate their offerings while defence firms continue to do deals to diversify away from shrinking defence budgets," PwC Security Industry Leader Barry Jaber said.
The market is vast, with total global cyber security spending expected to reach $60 billion in 2011 and forecast to grow at 10% every year during the next three to five years, PwC said.
"Growing threats and awareness and changes in technology, such as mobile devices and cloud computing, are key drivers of spending growth in the cyber security market," Jaber added.
In most regions, the private sector accounts for the majority of cyber security spending, though the US was a notable exception, where government spending was almost equal to that of the private sector.
A region-wise analysis shows that the US led other countries in terms of the value of M&A deals in the cyber security space. What is more, 50% of the M&A transactions during the period involved US acquirers or target companies.
In comparison, Europe accounted for about a quarter of the total deal value and a third of transaction volumes during the period.