Exertis' new UK and Ireland chief Gerry O’Keeffe has warned his distribution rivals to be on their guard as they plot an aggressive growth path globally.
The DCC SerCom distribution group – which recently rebranded to include the prefix Exertis – is currently the fifth-largest technology distributor in Europe, but is planning to move further up the rankings.
Its Exertis prefix covers all companies in the DCC SerCom stable, including its largest subsidiary Micro-P; plus Gem, Advent and MSE, along with operations across Europe, the US, Mexico and China.
Speaking to CRN, O’Keeffe (pictured) said: “I love nothing better than setting targets and overachieving them, and we would seriously like to be in third place as a minimum in the next three to four years. We are very, very focused on being highly relevant to our vendors both in Europe and in due course beyond that, and we see ourselves as a real alternative to the global guys.”
O’Keeffe, who previously headed up Micro-P, took on a broader role within parent company DCC SerCom last month to oversee growth both organically and through acquisition.
Its most recent buy was Cohort Technology earlier this month.
He said: “The Cohort acquisition is a perfect example of the type of acquisition we look for in the UK and Ireland. It gives us extra skill sets and allows us to service our vendors in an even more focused way.”
O’Keeffe cited the firm’s Dell partnership as an example. “Through the Cohort acquisition we are able to provide Dell with more technical and pre/post-sales support. We are an aggregator for them globally and in 30 countries across Europe, and our relationship has grown over the past few years and through a combination of working with us, SIs and VARs, that has impacted their market share.”
He explained that the reason for the rebrand was to ensure a consistent branding message in all the territories where the firm operates.
“You only have to look and see what’s happening in the world today. Consolidation is happening at so many different levels, particularly at vendor level, and we have to ensure we are able to represent vendors in as broad a way possible. Everybody wants to manage their supply chain as efficiently as possible and we have to manage it in the right way.
“If you look at what Exertis is in the UK and Ireland – we are very strong in IT, and have become very relevant in the mobile world over the past two or three years. We are also predominant in the home entertainment market via Gem and MSE. We will look to build our business in Europe on those three pillars and always look to do it in a way in which we can add value.”
He said the rebrand is forcing the various DCC SerCom companies to work together ever closer than before.
“In bringing MSE, Gem and Micro-P under the same name we have to combine forces better than before and work as a joined-up entity. We have big plans in terms of logistics and consolidating numerous distribution centres, along with system/IT upgrades to ensure we are expanding all the time.
“We are going to focus on how we can bring our customers new revenue streams by combining our market knowledge, product lines and expertise. We want to provide flexibility and access to senior management, and manage relationships at a local level so we can really offer an alternative for our vendors,” he said.
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