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Consolidation continues with Q Associates buying and Radius Connect emerging

Getting bigger is still a maxim being followed by some in the channel, with a couple of examples to add to the ever-expanding acquisitions list

The coronavirus pandemic has ushered in many changes, but one of the trends it has not been able to stop is consolidation, with the channel continuing to invest in technologies and skills.

Data management specialist Q Associates has added more muscle to its datacentre infrastructure capabilities by acquiring cloud and networking player Apex Group.

The combination of the two firms will produce an operation with about 80 staff and turnover of £35m. The details of the acquisition have not been disclosed.

Apex brings a number of benefits to Q Associates, including networking expertise and some cloud migration and integration services. The firm has developed support offerings around Microsoft Azure Cloud, Modern Workplace, Business Applications and Data Analytics.

Q Associates’ plan is to use the Apex deal to enable it to reach out to more Microsoft customers.

“The acquisition of Apex Group represents a significant development for Q Associates and our clients, who are striving to embrace the benefits of digital transformation and cloud productivity,” said David Cue, founder and managing director of Q Associates.

“This is a key step as we continue to expand our digital services portfolio, supporting customers with specialist services across modern workplace, datacentre and cloud environments – underpinned by independent advice and technical excellence.”

Gerry Allan, managing director of Apex Group, will join the Q Associates board following the acquisition.

“Our combined technical capability will enable us to support customers with a full range of expert services at a time when the IT landscape is rapidly evolving,” he said.

Meanwhile, Radius Payment Solutions has cut the ribbon on Radius Connect, a telecoms provider that has emerged out of three recent acquisitions – Pure Telecom, Trinity Maxwell and Reliance Networks.

Radius Connect starts life with a 70,000-strong subscriber base across mobile and fixed-line services, based on a range of options that include Microsoft, IBM, Cisco, Avaya, 8x8, BT, EE, Gamma, O2 and Vodafone.

“Over the last six months, we have integrated three established businesses to create Radius Connect,” said Ray Ferris, group managing director of Radius Connect. “Using our combination of data, networking and industry insight means we can support companies of all sizes in getting the smartest approach to their operations, differentiating us and how we deliver value.

“We believe our buy-and-build strategy provides us with a unique opportunity to scale up our operations and achieve better results for our customers, so this is just the start of our rapid organic growth and further M&A activity over the next few months.”

The firm is no stranger to using acquisition to expand, having sealed seven deals between November and December last year across telematics, telecoms and insurance services.

Its ambition is to grow the business internationally and lean on these deals to go beyond just offering telecoms but also telematics, insurance and fuel cards.

David Hayward, director at Radius Connect Solutions, said: “Our approach is based on giving customers access to a wide range of market-leading products backed up with independent consultancy, installation services and award-winning customer service.

“From our previous regional success, we now have the backing of a company with a turnover of £2.5bn, and expanded access to a fabulous product portfolio, which will enable us to accelerate our growth plans for the future, both in the UK and internationally.”

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