Avnet has bought distributor Premier Farnell for £691m in a move an analyst says has "great potential".
Leeds-based distributor Premier Farnell was previously in talks to be bought by Datwyler, a German manufacturing company, but the Premier Farnell board withdrew its recommendation after it received another offer, which was 12.1 per cent higher, from Avnet.
William Amelio, interim CEO at Avnet, said: "This acquisition will significantly strengthen Avnet's digital footprint worldwide. The convergence of Premier Farnell's innovative online services with Avnet's world-class supply chain will create customer service unparalleled in the industry."
Premier Farnell also manufactures its own products, the main product being the Raspberry Pi - a mini computer which can be used to teach programming.
Senior analyst at Canalys, Tim Coulling, said he thinks that Raspberry Pi is one of the main reasons for Avnet' interest in Premier Farnell.
He said: "[The acquisition] makes a good fit. Avnet's supply chain will be able to get the Raspberry Pi into more hands, so it will be good for volumes of that product. Pi is definitely one of the major reason why they have acquired it.
"Owning Raspberry Pi has great commercialisation potential. At the minute it is just kicking over into commercial so Avnet can maybe capitalise on that. It certainly gives them IP which they can leverage in terms of getting products to market."
Coulling added that he is unsure at this stage how much of an impact the acquisition will have on Avnet's distribution capabilities, but that it couldn't "be a bad thing to extend their reach".
Valerie Gooding, chairman of Premier Farnell, said: "The combination of Premier Farnell and Avnet would create a leading high-service global electronic components distributor and represents a strong strategic fit. Both companies are highly complementary in terms of product range, distribution channels and geographic footprint."
Badge will cover basic coding skills and app development, among other things
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