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Private equity firm Francisco Partners yesterday offered to buy Sandvine Corp., a Toronto-listed provider of network policy control solutions, for C$4.15 per share. This tops a C$3.80 per share bid from Vector Capital, which SandVine previously accepted and gave the company a fully-diluted equity value of around C$483 million. Vector now has five days to figure out its next step, but this deal might have more consequence than a typical private equity bidding war, particularly in the area of global surveillance.

Turkey deal: Francisco seeks to combine SandVine with existing portfolio company Procera Networks. If that latter company sounds familiar, perhaps that's because it was accused of providing technology to Turkey's government that allowed the country's strongman president to spy on his own citizens – via deep-packet inspection technologies that SandVine also provides. Details of the relationship were leaked by Procera employees, some of whom reportedly believed the company's ethical compass shifted when Francisco took control in 2015. Francisco and Procera, for the record, denied any wrongdoing.

Flynn factor: Francisco also controls Israeli cyber-surveillance company NSO Group, whose software was used by the Mexican government to spy on journalists and anti-corruption advocates. NSO's paid advisors have included Michael Flynn, the former Trump national security advisor who also last year provided consulting work to Francisco.

Mum's the word: Vector Capital doesn't have any existing portfolio companies in this space. But it also isn't commenting on how it would manage or monitor Sandvine, in terms of sales to certain foreign government entities.

Go deeper

Fed signals it could yank economic support quicker as inflation sticks around

Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell testifies during a hearing before Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee today. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Federal Reserve will consider pulling back economic support sooner "as the threat of persistently high inflation has grown," chair Jerome Powell said during a congressional hearing on Tuesday.

Why it matters: This is the biggest signal yet the Fed is backing away from its stance that soaring prices would be fleeting — a change that could shift its policies that underpin the economy.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
Updated 2 hours ago - Economy & Business

Crypto meets the real world

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

The two largest countries in the world seem intent on effectively banning their citizens from participating in crypto, which poses a serious threat to the crypto agenda.

Why it matters: The crypto world is global — but the real world is fragmented into nation-states, each of which claims control of what happens within its borders.

Meadows cooperating with House Jan. 6 select committee

Mark Meadows. Photo: Yuri Gripas/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is cooperating with the House select committee in charge of investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, the panel said Tuesday.

Driving the news: Meadows, who failed to appear before the panel earlier this month, is believed to have insight into former President Trump's role in efforts to stop the certification of President Biden's election win.