Acquiring distributor Veracomp is just a "starting point" for Exclusive Networks' growth plans in the CEE region according to two of its senior executives.
This week, Exclusive Networks announced its acquisition of Veracomp - a €300m-revenue cybersecurity and cloud distributor with 400 employees across 10 eastern European countries.
The deal puts Exclusive's revenues at more than €3bn and swells its global headcount to 3,000 staff across more than 50 countries.
Speaking to Channel Partner Insight soon after the Veracomp deal was announced, Exclusive Networks' senior execs Gerard Allison and Andy Travers said that they plan to use the acquisition as a springboard for growth in the CEE region.
The French distributor has been building a global business through an agressive M&A strategy.. In recent years, it has broken into new markets through acquisitions in the US, Canada, Israel and Hong Kong.
Allison said that most of Exclusive's vendor partners had been eager to hear about Exclusive's expansion plans for the CEE market
"The vendors I've spoken to over the last few days are very happy that we've made this acquisition and they see it as a natural progression to what we're doing globally," said Allison.
"It is a geography where most vendors have asked about what our plans are and equally some of the partners. We may have serviced some of these partners from other locations, but the reality is that actually being in-country makes such a big difference. People gravitate to each other, they can do their business better, they understand the local logistics and markets and we can put in place really robust plans across all of those territories now."
Allison said that the distributor's global systems integrator (GSI) customers have been expanding into the CEE region in recent years, and the Veracomp acquisition will enable Exclusive to support them.
Very few of its existing reseller customers are currently operating in the CEE market, said Allison, so the Veracomp acquisition will bring Exclusive new business with local integrators across eastern Europe. Veracomp has a "broad base" of customers, claims Travers, serving around 3,000 GSI partners, international integrators and local players in the CEE region.
Allison said that Veracomp and Exclusive will come together to explore which vendors they could introduce to new regions across both the distributors' territories. Exclusive will also share best practices from a marketing and programming perspective with the Veracomp team.
"It is important that when you look at any new vendor that you put a plan and a structure behind it. There's no definitive plans, but we will look at the portfolio and see what compliments it and speak to the necessary vendors going forward," he said.
Sales and marketing boss Travers said Veracomp will convert to Exclusive's branding at some point in the future.
"Clearly we are expecting growth in the region, and we can see that happening already with the financial results we've seen from Veracomp," he said.
"From a size perspective, it is a big acquisition. But if you look at the acquisitions we've made in the past, they've really been platforms for growth. The acquisition for us is just a starting point. We're really managed to capitalise on the Exclusive Networks brand to expand into these areas."
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