Network Associates (NAI) is ditching its name and renaming itself McAfee, as part of its plans to reinforce its image as a dedicated security vendor.
The company has also sold its Sniffer network analysis product line to Silver Lake Partners and Texas Pacific Group for $275m in cash.
Kevin Weiss, executive vice-president worldwide sales and channel operation at NAI, told CRN the new Sniffer owners intend to form a stand-alone entity called Network General Corporation, which will continue to develop, support, sell and market the Sniffer brand.
"We have primarily been focusing on security rather than the networking side," Weiss said. "We know the new owners will invest heavily in the Sniffer product line and will be keeping the channel sales team intact."
Weiss added that the vendor understands that the two technologies will be associated with each other "for a long time", and that both firms understand it is important to maintain a good relationship for the sake of their channel partners.
Weiss reaffirmed NAI's commitment to its partners, and said the firm's latest channel programme was developed "with the knowledge that (NAI) was to be spinning off Sniffer this year".
He added: "We are a channel company through and through, and although a vendor can never be 100 per cent channel, we are definitely 99 per cent indirect."
Ash Hussein, sales and marketing director at NAI partner Axial Systems, welcomed the move. "The sale is probably the best thing for Sniffer itself, and I think it will also be good for customers that recognise both the Sniffer and McAfee brand names," he said.
Hussein added that NAI has focused very little on Sniffer. "The brand has been left to drift pretty much since it bought the company," he said.
"Provided the new owners actually do something with Sniffer it will benefit partners and customers."
Axial Systems started out selling the Sniffer and "came across" McAfee further down the line, Hussein said. "But now they are both very significant to us," he added.
"However, as with all these things, what happens next is going to be interesting, and only time will tell."
CEO claims the firm is set to make 'bold acquisitions in the very near feature'
Global spend on datacentre tech will slow to 1.6 per cent in 2019
Traditional outsourcing increases 40 per cent year on year in Q3
MSP execs hoping to make splash in cybersecurity training pond with new business