Getronics' new CEO Nana Baffour has said that he intends to make changes to the IT services firm, including an aggressive M&A strategy, and moving into new verticals, as he seeks to double the firm's size to $1bn turnover.
US/Brazilian entrepreneur Baffour is the majority shareholder of Bottega InvestCo, which bought Getronics from asset management firm AURELIUS in July.
He said in his first press briefing since taking over the reins from predecessor Mark Cook that he will use his business background as a former banker for Credit Suisse to rapidly grow Getronics through M&A.
"I've always used M&A as a goal for growth. There are very few companies I've started from scratch so I'm very comfortable with M&A strategy. Suffice to say, we are looking at a few interesting opportunities right now... Be prepared for something interesting in the next couple of months," Baffour said.
"We will be a $1bn company by 2020, and are currently at around half a billion, so we need to look at 100 per cent growth. We expect 70 per cent of our growth to come from acquisition. So in the next two years, we expect to acquire businesses that will bring in around $300m in revenue on a yearly basis.
"I would rather be an owner of Getronics than of a gold mine," he added.
In terms of which companies he has his eye on, Baffour hinted at landing Getronics in the US for the first time, as well as moving the company into doing business in new verticals.
"You can expect us to look at transactions that could be US-focused because that's a geography that we currently don't have a strong presence in, but would like to," he said.
"Our business historically has not been very vertical-orientated, but increasingly the market is demanding some vertical expertise.
"Historically, I've been very active working in the utilities base but Getronics has not had a strong presence there, and I think we should change that.
"When you think of large sectors that touch consumers - financial services, telcos, retail and utilities - utilities is the one that is the most behind in digital transformation. And it's a space that I believe has been lacking in investment and so we can bring a lot of value there."
Naming his big-fish competitors as including publicly owned giants Atos, Fujitsu, IBM and Computacenter, Baffour claimed that Getronics stands out as "one of the few independent large-scale businesses in Europe doing what we do".
"Most of our revenue is coming from the higher end of the mid-market, a good 65 per cent, and then the rest comes from large global companies," he said.
"We have a regional orientation focus to the customer, whether it's in Benelux or Iberia or Asia-Pac and in those markets. And we are saying to clients that not only can we provide you services at the quality that some of the largest offer, but we can do it in a manner that is closer to you.
"The type of interest we can bring to your boardroom, you may not get from our larger competitors. Because if you are a $1bn business, it's not clear to me that you may get the same level of attention from the very large corporations as from Getronics…We are able to bring to that upper end of the mid-market client the same level of sophisticated solution, but we do it in a manner that is closer to them and more intimate."
Getronics has a headcount of around 4,500, and a heritage of over 125 years. Operational in 22 countries across Europe and APAC, it has regional offices in EMEA including in Reading, Brussels, Amsterdam, Paris, Budapest, Madrid and Barcelona.
Its Barcelona branch announced last week that Getronics is launching its Security Operations Centre. Charging on a pay-as-you-use model, Getronics touted its 24/7 real-time managed security service as protecting clients against the rising number of cyber attacks, and better equipping organisations still not up to speed on GDPR compliance.
Spain, Baffour said, is a growth target for Getronics.
"We would like to expand our Spanish business to be a bit more solutions-orientated than it currently is. At the moment it's more applications-focused."
He added: "The UK is also somewhere we would like to be bigger, likewise in Germany. And looking to Eastern Europe, we have a great presence in Hungary and we would like to use that platform to expand further there."
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