This case tells the story of McAfee Associates, who was a leader in the anti-virus software. The case is extensive background information about John McAfee, the founder and the anti-virus software industry as it emerged in the late 1980s and early 1990s. John McAfee recognized the potential opportunity in protecting computers from viruses and created a small software package, that would solve the problem. He distributed the product primarily of shareware, the product free of indiv … Read more »

This case tells the story of McAfee Associates, who was a leader in the anti-virus software. The case is extensive background information about John McAfee, the founder and the anti-virus software industry as it emerged in the late 1980s and early 1990s. John McAfee recognized the potential opportunity in protecting computers from viruses and created a small software package, that would solve the problem. He distributed the product primarily of shareware, where the product of free individuals. Company customers were required to pay for the software. Thus grew McAfee Associates, a $ 5 million turnover business with 90% operating margin, and had good prospects for continued rapid growth. John was approached by the CEO of Symantec, who wanted to buy McAfee, with an attractive bid. Around the same time he was two VC firms that wanted to invest 10 million dollars for 50% of the companies approached. Now he had to decide which of the financial bids, if any, to take.
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from
Jeffrey Chambers,
Alexander Tauber
Source: Stanford Graduate School of Business
31 pages.
Release Date: 1 July 1998. Prod #: E48A-PDF-ENG
McAfee (A) HBR case solution