The network security market remains resilient despite global growth slowing to single digits last year.
That is the view of Infonetics Research, which claims that network security appliance and software revenues rose by a solid eight per cent to $5.5bn (£3.9bn) in 2008. This compares with growth of 20 per cent in 2007.
According to the market watcher, fourth quarter growth stood at a more muted three per cent.
But Infonetics stressed that the market remains strong and that 2009 would be an “okay year”.
“While that's not great in a vacuum, many industries would be ecstatic to experience an okay 2009,” said Jeff Wilson, principal analyst, network security, at Infonetics.
Infonetics’s figures cover integrated security appliances, secure routers, SSL VPN gateways, VPN and firewall software, and network-based intrusion detection and prevention products. Nearly all of those market segments contributed to the solid annual growth, the research firm said.
Having hit its network security targets for Q4, Cisco remains the dominant player with a 40 per cent revenue share. Juniper and Check Point sit in the silver and bronze medal positions.
Wilson said: “Looking forward, consolidation in the market should create some strong and interesting competition among the top five vendors. McAfee is digesting Secure Computing, Check Point will fully absorb Nokia’s security appliance business by the first or second quarter of 2009, and Nortel entered chapter 11 in November.”
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