A £28m management buy out (MBO), Stone’s second in three years, was announced last week.
James Bird, chief executive of Stone, told CRN that the company’s previous backers had been more focused on organic growth, but that he had now found a “like-minded partner” in RJD.
“The last MBO was the first time we had entered the corporate finance market and it was a huge learning curve,” said Bird.
Stone completed the acquisition of reseller Compusys last year and Bird indicated that he was looking to make one or two further acquisitions of companies with a turnover up to £30m.
“The market is consolidating and we have opportunities. We want to secure our position at the very top of tier two, but we are not in the frame of mind to start rushing out and buying up all of our competitors,” he added.
Stone’s 2007 turnover was more than £50m and Bird plans to swell that figure to more than £70m this year and £100m in 2009, with upwards of £20m of that growth achieved acquisitively.
Bird also revealed that Stone aims to build on its success in the education sector by increasing its presence in the health and local government markets.
Jill Williams, investment executive for RJD, told CRN: “We were very impressed with the management team; they have a lot of experience. They have proven they can successfully integrate, so there is potential in terms of making selective acquisitions.”
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