Sophos is applying to launch an initial public offering (IPO) on the London Stock Exchange, with the hope of being admitted to the main market in July.
The Abingdon security vendor hopes to raise £100m from the float, which could leave it valued at £1bn, deep into the "unicorn" territory of Silicon Valley’s most vaunted companies.
Kris Hagerman, chief executive of Sophos, said: "Bringing Sophos to the public markets will enable us to access capital, improve our global brand and enhance our ability to enable enterprises around the world, of any size, to deploy a simple and effective security solution.
"This is a very exciting time for Sophos and UK technology. We are proud of all that Sophos has accomplished over its 30-year history, but we are even more excited about the road ahead as we embark on the next stage of our growth as a public company."
The move comes as the company, which specialises in endpoint and network protection, prepares to launch its Galileo project that will integrate the two halves of its business, with the intention of competing in the growing market for security analytics.
The so-called "heartbeat" of the package will allow customers to detect erratic user behaviour on their networks by monitoring users, matching other vendors’ behavioural analytics plans.
James Vyvyan, vice president of UKI at Sophos, explained to CBR: "A lot of the time it’s impossible to see malicious incidents in the system until it does something, and by the time it does something it’s too late."
Unlike other vendors the company has not created big plans to integrate its offerings with other vendors more closely, preferring to leave this to resellers, consultants and customers.
"As a vendor we have to design our product for our market segment, and sometimes that means people who fall outside that segment can’t use them," Vyvyan said.
Sophos’s floatation plans follows the release of financial results for the fiscal year ending March, in which the company booked billings of $476m (£312m), an increase of more than a fifth on the previous year.
More than half of the company’s business is in the EMEA region where its main headquarters is located, with a third in the Americas and the remainder in Asia Pacific.
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