Kerv emerges to offer a fresh cloud approach

Former CEO and COO of Six Degrees Group cut the ribbon on a fresh operation formed from a three-firm tie-up

There is a new name for the channel to add to the list of those specialising in delivering cloud services – Kerv.

The business has been launched by Alastair Mills, former founder and CEO of the Six Degrees Group, and Mike Ing, former COO at Six Degrees, and is an LDC-backed £30m merger of three cloud firms – DoubleEdge Professional Services, Foehn and Metaphor IT.

The newly formed entity will start life with 100 staff, 50 customers and revenues of £20m. It has also signalled that this is just the first action and further acquisitions are planned to expand the operation further.

Kerv’s leadership team will include Mills as executive chairman, Ing as managing director and Andrew Marshall as group CFO. The management teams at the three businesses also remain in place and will form the rest of the senior management.

“Customers want to buy a wider range of integrated solutions from a trusted partner while leveraging the power of cloud technologies,” said Mills. “But they will only do so if those providers can continue to deliver excellent customer experience in this rapidly changing market.

“As we focus on organic growth, supplemented by carefully targeted acquisitions, we will not lose sight of our customer-first strategy.”

It is clear that LDC is making a multimillion-pound investment in the future of the business and more acquisitions could follow.

Mills added: “Our goal is not to chase short-term profit gains through aggressive cost-cutting as we acquire complementary businesses. Instead, with the support of LDC, we plan to invest in great companies and accelerate organic growth through a relentless focus on CX. 

“In a technology market that continues to consolidate rapidly through M&A, we feel that now is the right time for a change in focus and culture.”

Kerv is not only looking to deliver cloud services and solutions, but is also investing in its own operating platform to deliver a number of cloud services. The firm will use a team based in Spain to develop its own IP.

Ing said the shifts in working patterns accelerated by the coronavirus had underlined the sense in Kerv’s strategy.

“Since we sketched out our CX-focused investment plan towards the end of 2019, we’ve seen a dramatic shift to cloud-based remote working at an unprecedented scale,” he said. “With the increasing availability of rapidly innovating cloud-based applications, IT managed service providers should no longer need to be asset heavy, or rely on long-term infrastructure investments. Their job will be to integrate best-of-breed capabilities to deliver solutions for their customers.

“As a cloud-first, customer-first business, we have the combined capabilities to help UK businesses navigate a new way of working as they adapt to an agile, technology-led environment post-pandemic.”

Yann Souillard, head of LDC in London, said LDC had known Mills and Ing for a while and shared their belief that they could make a difference in the market. “The combination of customer-focused cloud-based solutions, along with Alastair and Mike’s track record and our approach to long-term partnership all stand the business in good stead to become a market leader,” he said.

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