Nebulas has joined forces with an ambitious buy-and-build outfit aiming to become a "powerhouse" within the European cyber-security services market.
SecureLink has acquired Nebulas for an undisclosed sum with backing from InvestCorp, the private equity firm that merged US cyber-security providers FishNet Security and Accuvant to create $1.5bn-turnover player Optiv.
Headquartered in the Netherlands, SecureLink only six weeks ago acquired 250-strong Nordic security VAR Coresec.
With Nebulas on board it now employs 550 staff in the Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and the UK, and boasts a revenue runrate of €235m.
Talking to CRN, Nebulas managing director Nick Garlick (pictured) said becoming part of a European group represents a natural next step for Nebulas, which reported net profits of £2m on revenues of £23.7m in its year to 31 March 2016.
"Investcorp are known in our industry for Fishnet Security in the States," he said.
"They are now looking to do the same thing in Europe through SecureLink.
"When I started the company, 15 years ago next month, I had the sole aim of becoming the UK's largest independent IT security specialist - which now translates as cyber-security specialist - and I feel we've achieved that. This is the next step in our journey."
Vendor partnerships across SecureLink, Coresec and Nebulas are "almost identical", Garlick said, with Palo Alto Networks, F5 Networks, Check Point and Blue Coat among the common allies.
Nebulas is the latest in a long line of UK security VARs to sell up to pan-European or pan-global outfits - Sysec's sale to Herjavec last year being a prominent example - and Garlick argued that scale is a major advantage in today's market.
"The market is evolving and the key requirement we are seeing from customers now is to deliver a greater depth of services," he said. "Joining forces with the SecureLink Group gives us far greater combined resources and capabilities on a European scale to deliver a wider range of services from a greater pool of resources.
"The objective is to build a powerhouse in Europe with the best services and offering the best support to customers, in order to give them the most effective cybersecurity protection in Europe."
Rumours emerged last summer that Nebulas was in talks to be acquired by NTT Security, but Garlick dismissed this as "just speculation", saying he wasn't even sure where the rumours orginiated.
Garlick said he himself is "absolutely staying on".
"This for me is the next stage in my personal aim to build this on a European level. I'm staying on, as are my management," he said. "We are the UK subsidiary of SecureLink Group and as a shareholder in the group it's an amazing opportunity now."
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