CSPs, IT management, Midmarket, Mergers and Acquisitions, MSP

SolarWinds and N-able Acquired for $4.5B

Silver Lake Partners and Thoma Bravo have acquired SolarWinds (SWI) for $4.5 billion and will take the company private. SolarWinds' commitment to its N-able division -- focused on managed services providers (MSPs) -- appears to remain in place, but ChannelE2E is checking for more details.

SolarWinds has spent recent weeks listening to offers for the company. Although the IT monitoring and management software business remains in growth mode, Wall Street was disappointed with the company's most recent quarterly results.

In response, multiple private equity firms apparently started to evaluate a potential SolarWinds buyout -- though it's unclear if SolarWinds made the first move to attract suitors. Silver Lake and Thoma Bravo announced the SolarWinds buyout today.

SolarWinds N-able and MSPs

SolarWinds has owned the N-able software business -- focused on MSPs -- since 2013. Generally speaking, that business has performed well. SolarWinds CEO Kevin Thompson gave N-able GM JP Jauvin and his team autonomy and financial support. Indeed, SolarWinds acquired ticketing systems as well as remote control software to help N-able to round out its software portfolio for MSPs in the past few months.

The SolarWinds buyout is part of a larger trend within the MSP software and IT management sector, where a growing number of companies are owned by private equity firms. The scorecard includes:

MSPs, Cloud and Hybrid Solutions

In prepared statements, Silver Lake mentioned SolarWinds' strength empowering IT professionals. Thoma Bravo, in contrast, specifically mentioned momentum with cloud, hybrid and MSP environments. ChannelE2E believes N-able will remain under SolarWinds' roof and ownership. But we're double-checking that belief with company representatives.

Stay tuned for updates.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.