London-based MSP Claranet announced a trio of acquisitions today, snapping up Leeds-based security firm Sec-1, French dev-ops outfit Oxalide and Portuguese service provider ITEN Solutions to continue an acquisition frenzy that has now seen it acquire 20 firms in the past five years.
The aggressive strategy has been aided by £80m funding received earlier this month from French investment group Tikehau Capital. It has also secured refinancing with a host of lenders, which has provided funding for further takeovers.
Claranet's UK managing director Michel Robert told CRN to expect further acquisitions down the line, but said he could not put a timeframe on future activity.
"Part of the refinancing that we've done is to put in place a facility for future acquisitions, if they make sense," he said. "That really is the most important thing; it's about identifying a capability we want to improve.
"The second thing is finding a company we feel will be a good fit for us. We buy companies to manage them and to integrate them; we don't buy businesses to sell them in a couple of years. We have to make sure they're the right fit and then obviously it's [about] making sure the deal is right in terms of how much we want to pay.
"We're looking, and there will be future opportunities, but there is nothing I can talk about right now. One of the things that makes Claranet a strong business is [that] it's not just operating in one market, so if there aren't good opportunities in the UK, for example, there might be good opportunities in France, or the Netherlands, or Germany."
The three acquisitions announced today are expected to increase Claranet's revenue by over 40 per cent to around £310m - with Sec-1, Oxalide and ITEN adding around £6m, £15m and £69m respectively.
The expanded company will now have around 1,800 employees in eight countries across Europe and South America.
In a statement, Charles Nasser, CEO of the Claranet Group, said: "Claranet's organic growth, combined with acquisitions, has meant we have established a significant operation in the managed IT services market at the European level, which we believe puts us ahead of many of our competitors in the region.
"These latest acquisitions represent a significant step forward for Claranet, confirming our market-leading position in France and Portugal and boosting our group-wide security and application management capabilities for the benefit of our customers."
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