The VAR’s managing director Martin Hellawell recently expressed his wish that his imminent replacement Colin Brown will immerse himself in “this madness that is Softcat”. But however crazy life at the Marlow-based reseller often appears to be, it is clearly having a positive effect. Top-line growth in recent years has been astronomical and margins have not suffered either. Softcat was also nominated by the Sunday Times a couple of years ago as the best small company to work for in the UK and it has also won the last two CRN Reseller of the Year awards.
All the while the company has become arguably the leading SMB reseller in the UK, with revenues having doubled in the last two years. In FY10, the firm’s sales were about £146m. Two years later, Softcat smashed through the £300m barrier on the last day of its fiscal year this summer.
Since then the firm has bade a fond (and typically bonkers) farewell to larger-than-life chairman Peter Kelly. Hellawell will step into Kelly’s role sometime in the next six months, with former Computacenter exec Brown assuming the MD reins following a bedding-in period.
But Hellawell recently assured CRN that he is “not going into semi-retirement” and will retain a hands-on role. He also stressed his commitment to ensuring that, however big Softcat gets and whatever changes occur to the senior management line-up, the reseller will not become “too corporate or too ugly”.
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