After eBay and HP's breakups, Symantec may be next in line for a split

Breaking up is hard to do, but it seems it's the season for it with rumours that Symantec is once again weighing up whether to split its storage and security businesses.

Symantec may be poised to join the list of tech heavyweights opting to split: according to a report from Bloomberg, the company is considering carving up its storage and security businesses into two companies.

According to sources of the publication with knowledge of Symantec's plans, the company is weighing up options to form two entities, with one focused on selling security products and another specialising in storage.

ZDNet has asked Symantec for comment and will update the story if it receives one. A Symantec spokeswoman earlier declined to comment to Bloomberg.

Symantec acquired storage management vendor Veritas in 2005 under then CEO John Thompson for $13.5bn, creating two product lines that had little overlap and, in terms of financial performance, that were rarely in sync.

The move, seen as an effort to compete with bigger rivals including IBM, HP, and Cisco, disappointed investors after achieving mixed results for the company in the following years.

Subsequent CEOs of Symantec, including Enrique Salem, who was ousted in July 2012 , have contended with calls by investors to sell off the Veritas division or spin-off its Norton-led consumer security business. More recently, Symantec has turned its attention to competing with newer rivals in enterprise security, such as FireEye and Palo Alto.

The replacement for Salem, Steve Bennet, also considered whether to spin-off its consumer business or undo the Veritas deal . Bennet was replaced this September by storage veteran Michael Brown , who joined Symantec's board after the Veritas acquisition, having previously served as CEO for storage rival Quantum. He's also held a leadership role in EqualLogic, which was sold to Dell in 2007 for $1.4bn.

According to Bloomberg, Brown supports the idea of breaking up the company.

Symantec's potential split comes amid a round of breakups by big technology companies, most notably HP, which split its consumer and enterprise divisions , and eBay, which announced plans to spin-off its profitable payments arm PayPal.

There's also a connection to eBay's PayPal spinoff in the push for Symantec's breakup. PayPal president Dan Schulman conducted the six month search for Bennet's replacement ahead of Symantec before Brown transitioned from interim to permanent CEO.

At the announcement of HP's breakup, it emerged that the company had been in talks with storage giant EMC over a potential deal and that the split could make such a move more likely.

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