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Industry Events

The Evolution of Networking and Security: Cisco Announces Intent to Acquire Duo

[In response to today’s amazing news, our CEO Dug Song wrote this letter to the Duo team. — Editor]

Dear Duo,

Today we have some exciting news to announce. This morning, we entered into an agreement to be acquired by Cisco. You can see our press release about this news here, but I want to give you more context.

When we started Duo, the security industry was badly broken. Users were blamed and victims were shamed for what were really design failures in IT – or worse, vendors spent more time admiring attackers versus defeating them. The complexity of security products often introduced more problems than they solved, and for every dollar of product, twice as many dollars were spent on services to support them.

A new philosophy and approach to security was needed; one that demonstrated respect for people, both in the design of the products and in how business is done. And so we formed Duo.

We wanted to make security easy & effective, and we’ve done that by building the right kind of company to do so. We design and deliver security that gets out of your way and just works, versus an industry full of impractical ideas and frustrating experiences. Our industry-leading measure of customer satisfaction (70+ Net Promoter Score – NPS) is a testament to our relentless focus on customers, and solving for their needs.

We challenged ourselves to be the kind of trustworthy partner that we would want to work with. We’ve done that by being transparent and ethical, reliable and dependable, and demonstrating expertise across the organization, our customers and partners have come to value us as much for our character as our competence.

And so 8 years, 12,000 customers, and over 700 extremely talented and dedicated team members later, we’ve made our mark on the industry, helping to make security easy and effective for all, and earning the love of our customers, partners, and community. I could not be more proud of what we’ve accomplished together, but we’ve only scratched the surface of our potential. So today I am also extremely proud to announce our next chapter; Duo will be joining forces with Cisco, the world’s largest networking company.

Before we get into why this makes so much sense for our team, our product, and our brand, I would encourage everyone to take a moment to process this news. You’re likely feeling mixed emotions, some excitement, some worry, some sadness, some joy. I have felt all of those emotions too, as we’ve built something amazing together over almost a decade. But I can also say, without a doubt, that this is the right thing to do for Duo, our team, our customers, partners, and stakeholders, and our industry.

Duo + Cisco: The Evolution of Security + Access

This agreement begins an exciting new chapter for Duo. With this deal, we will realize significant value for our shareholders, while gaining the opportunity to leverage Cisco’s global scale & resources to democratize security faster without compromising our vision.

Cisco is not only the world’s largest networking company, but also the world’s leading enterprise security business. They agree with us on the past state of security, and we’re going to fix it together. They’ve had a long and successful history of acquiring companies to support and accelerate their strategic initiatives.

And some of their recent strategic acquisitions — like OpenDNS, Sourcefire, Cloudlock, and now Duo — show just how seriously they take the next phase of their security business. They are a company evolving themselves under new leadership, new momentum, and a new focus on innovation in the cloud era. Cisco views our leadership in zero-trust security as transformational to their business, bringing cloud-based user and device trustworthiness to an already impressive security product portfolio.

Cisco has a successful track record of supporting and empowering the management teams of the companies that join them. Cisco is confident that as a new business unit in the Security Business Group, Duo has the opportunity to accelerate growth and achieve even greater success. In addition, I strongly believe that Cisco’s “People Deal” is well-aligned with our values - as they say, to Connect Everything, Innovate Everywhere, and Benefit Everyone.

As a new business unit within Cisco, Duo will benefit from being part of a larger organization with established go-to-market reach, scale, and partnerships. We will also have support and resources as part of Cisco to accelerate our strategy. I view this as an exciting opportunity to continue to innovate and invest in the future, and will continue to lead as Duo’s new General Manager, rather than its CEO (which is great - General Dug has a nice ring to it).

I know this news is unexpected, and I’m sure you’re all wondering what this means for each of you. Our strategy, purpose, and values remain unchanged. Cisco is committed to our leadership and core values that have made Duo a trusted advisor, industry leader, and a great place to work.

This is an important next chapter for Duo and there is much more we can accomplish together to position Cisco for enduring success. I am incredibly proud of the company we have built and look forward to our future with our friends at Cisco!

What’s Next?

Until the deal closes, we will continue to operate as separate companies. Let us all remain focused on executing our 2018 strategic plan and delivering our customers the unmatched products and experience they have come to expect from us.

Keep doing what you do best – providing the most loved security experience, product and service in the industry for our customers. And thank you for all of your hard work and dedication up to now, and in the journey ahead.