NetScreen Technologies announced that it has signed an agreement to acquire Neoteris, makers of Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) VPN and application security gateway appliances. NetScreen will pay approximately $245 million in stock and $20 million in cash at the closing. NetScreen said that when the company achieves revenue milestones that it would also pay stockholders and option holders up to another $30 million in cash. 

NetScreen President and CEO Robert Thomas said, "While IPSec is the best technology for site-to-site VPN deployments, we believe Neoteris' advanced SSL VPN solutions will become the preferred solution for new, and expansion of existing, remote access deployments. This acquisition will not only strengthen our portfolio of end-to-end security offerings, it will allow us to drive adoption of SSL VPN technology as the preferred option for remote access deployments and position NetScreen for success in this growing market."

By purchasing Neoteris,
NetScreen rounds out its product offering to provide enterprise site-to-site connectivity, secure remote access for telecommuters, and secure remote connectivity for business partners. In addition, Neoteris' gateway solutions will bring to NetScreen the ability to implement forms-based and header-based Web single sign-on (SSO), password management, and online meeting functionality.