Several of Bell Micro’s top European staff have already been handed roles at Avnet Technology Solutions (TS) following the closure of the duo’s merger this morning.
Fresh from being unveiled as Avnet TS’ president of EMEA, Bell’s former global distribution president Graeme Watt told CRN that Avnet is looking to complete the integration of Bell within 12 months.
Watt said the country managers that report into him will have 30-45 days to form their own teams. The UK business will be headed up by Bell’s former European chief John Toal.
Although Avnet is both the larger firm and the acquirer, Watt said Bell staff will be given equal billing when roles at the enlarged firm are divvied out. The $631m deal creates a distribution powerhouse with revenues of close to $20bn and 1,900 staff in EMEA.
Some UK roles have already been finalised: Bell’s former European chief financial officer, Nick Lee, will take on the same role at Avnet TS at a UK level while Bell’s chief operating officer, Margaret Duke, will take on an HR focus in the UK.
“This is not about Avnet people getting priority treatment over Bell and vice versa,” Watt explained. “For every role that comes up we will make a considered decision."
Watt declined to comment on how many roles would be cut over the next year but argued the overlap between the two distributors' line cards is not as extensive as might be expected.
“They are genuinely very complementary businesses,” he said. “By country the most overlap is in the UK and Germany and by business there is some overlap in IBM and some limited overlap in hard drives."
He added that the deal would give Bell resellers access to a “long list” of new vendors including Intel, AMD and Juniper, while franchises held by Bell but not by Avnet included Microsoft, Seagate and Western Digital.
“There is a lot of potential here and it is about how quickly we leverage that potential and integrate the systems and brand names,” said Watt.
“We want to ensure we give business partners clarity and do not disrupt the business we do with them but at the same time move on with the integration as quickly as possible.”
Sukh Rayat, who was previously vice president of sales at Avnet TS, will now run Avnet’s computing components business in Europe. Avnet’s EMEA president Dick Borsboom is to eventually leave the business.
Avnet also completed its acquisition of Latin American distributor Tallard today and Watt hinted the distributor would continue along the M&A path.
“As the market consolidates Avnet will very much be a leader in that process,” he said.
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