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Report: BlackRock nearing deal for Pamplona Capital's stake in Cofense

BlackRock Inc. may announce a deal to buy Pamplona Capital Management LLP's minority stake in U.S. cybersecurity firm Cofense Inc. as soon as next week, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the talks.

The announcement is reportedly dependent on the deal being approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S., or CFIUS, and the trustee overseeing the sale process. The transaction would be structured in a way where BlackRock would not pay anything up front, but Pamplona would receive proceeds if its Cofense shares were later sold.

Pamplona is a private equity firm that reportedly has ties with prominent and wealthy Russians. CFIUS in 2018 ordered Pamplona to offload its stake in Cofense to limit foreign investor access to technology that could be used against the U.S.

BlackRock reengaged with Pamplona for the stake in August after two failed bids. The asset manager acquired Cofense with a group of investors including Pamplona in a deal valued at around $400 million.