“We had bigger offers on the table”

Circle IT founder Roger Harry turned down larger offers for the company prior to the acquisition by Arrow Business Communications because VAR offered a better “cultural fit,” he said. CRN.

Arrow announced the acquisition – its fifth of the year – last week, CEO Richard Burke saying Circle would add a “high level of technical skills” to “further enhance Arrow’s cloud, Microsoft and network capabilities.” .

As part of the deal, Circle IT founder Roger Harry will become a major shareholder of the Arrow Group to continue overseeing Circle’s growth and, in an interview with CRN, said the opportunity to continue growing the business was an important factor in the acquisition.

“We wanted to make sure that whoever came in, there was a good cultural fit. Obviously, without being too brash about it, I also wanted to take money off the table so that I had good security for the family and for the rest of the business, “he said CRN.

“So it was about making sure that they (the Circle employees) get a reward for all of this and that we can all continue as is and move on to the next phase, which is what that might be like.

“These are the first guys we saw the first day we started going through the process. We saw a lot of people after that, we saw PEs, we saw big VARs coming into the mix, SIs , but nothing really suited like he did with these guys.

“And that was a key part of our decision because we had bigger deals on the table but they were more, sort of take your money and run, as opposed to ‘we’re going to keep building something and moving on. to the next phase and we want you to be a part of it ”, which is why I have reinvested significantly in this one, because they integrate so well with us. “

Cardiff-based partner Microsoft, Dell and HPE Aruba acquired Fabric IT in July, bringing the company’s annual revenue to £ 25million, Circle said when announcing the acquisition.

And Harry said the sale will allow Circle to continue its expansion by selling to Arrow’s existing customer base after the wave of VAR acquisitions this year.

“They have been very clear that we keep our identity, we continue to do what we are doing now, but we have to fish in their pond with their 5,000 customers to whom they do not sell IT solutions,” he said. -he adds.

“And my first job now is to go around all these different businesses that they’ve bought and figure out how I can sell them to Circle customers and hopefully vice versa. How do we get into their customers? Because they don’t sell big network transformations, managed services, 365, fabric with everything they do with Dynamics and all that. We have a good opportunity.

“You have two types of buy and build. You have the ones buying and synergizing with them and then running the risk of losing a lot of customers or you have newer ones like Arrow buying them, letting them go on as they do. are and ensure that these synergies are found by selling through the customer base they have built.

“And this is where we see that we will derive a lot of value from and where we should see Circle as an entity that continues to grow quite significantly, as we now have a lot of fruit on hand in this Arrow base. “

About Florence L. Silvia

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