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QBS adds more MSP depth with 4SEC buy

Distributor makes second acquisition to add more depth to the software offerings it can provide partners

QBS Technology has continued to use acquisition as a means of extending its distribution footprint after swooping for 4SEC Group.

The deal, the terms of which were not disclosed, to purchase 100% of the share capital of 4SEC Group includes its related companies, Alpha Generation Distribution, which specialises in security software, and 4SERV, which focuses on arming managed service providers (MSPs) with sales and support tools.

QBS has used acquisition as an expansion tool before, picking up MSP-focused distributor Zedsphere this time last year. The firm also purchased a business in France, Siener Informatique, in February 2019 to bolster its activities on that side of the channel.

Set up seven years ago as an alternative to broadline IT distribution, Alpha Gen is headed by industry veteran Graham Smee. The firm has offices in Retford and Basingstoke, employing 36 staff. It generated sales of £9.6m for the year ended 31 March 2019. The firm works with a number of vendors, including Thycotic, Corero, Snow Software, Hitachi and Stormshield. It sells to an active base of more than 300 resellers, value-added resellers (VARs) and systems integrators (SIs).

“Alpha Gen has enjoyed considerable success in providing value-added services and bespoke solutions in a number of vertical markets for its customers, and has a well-earned reputation as a cyber security specialist,” said Dave Stevinson, group CEO of QBS.

“The acquisition has obvious benefits for both companies, enhancing QBS’s expertise and solutions in the cyber security market, complementary to our existing software businesses, and providing AlphaGen customers and vendors with a platform for growth within a highly focused software delivery platform,” he added.

“The 4SERV deal is our second acquisition of a highly focused MSP software delivery platform. We expect to deliver significant synergies and this augments QBS’s presence in the MSP software delivery channel”
Dave Stevinson, QBS Technology

Stevinson made reference to the Zedsphere deal, noting that this latest move would build on the services it could provide the managed service community.

“The 4SERV deal is our second acquisition of a highly focused MSP software delivery platform. We expect to deliver significant synergies and this augments QBS’s presence in the MSP software delivery channel,” he said.

In response, AlphaGen managing director Smee said becoming part of QBS would bring benefits for staff and customers.

“By leveraging the complementary strengths of each company, we can only add further value to what is a compelling proposition for all our stakeholders. We look forward to working with the QBS management teams and building on the success of both companies,” he said.

Smee is staying on, and as part of the deal will join QBS Group as chief revenue officer. Alpha Gen will continue to trade under its own name.

QBS appears to like striking deals in March, having made moves now in the past two years. It was acquired itself in February 2018 by GNR Technology as that firm looked to ramp up its involvement in the growing software distribution market.

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