Charterhouse CEO on Double Acquisition and Future M&A plans

Latest deals increase Teams capabilities and give further geographic reach

Unified CommunicationsLatest News

Published: January 7, 2021

Tom Wright

Managing Editor

Charterhouse will dip into the M&A market again this year after announcing a double acquisition, CEO, Mark Brooks-Wadham, has told UC Today.

The firm has revealed deals for Microsoft Teams specialist Symity and comms provider DXP this week.

Brooks-Wadham (pictured, above) said that the two acquisitions boost Charterhouse’s technical ability and geographic reach respectively.

On Symity, he said that Charterhouse’s role will be to assist the existing leadership team in continuing the strong growth it is already seeing.

“Our role is to support them in their growth and help them become the preeminent Microsoft Teams player in the UK,” he said.

“It will also build out our own capability and keep us at the forefront of UC, and make us the acknowledged choice in the UK UC space.

“Symity will play a fundamental role in that.”

Symity co-founder, Andrew Chambers, said that the firm’s specialism lies in complex Teams projects, particularly around Microsoft Phone System deployment.

It works with businesses with a range of headcounts – from 90,000-strong government departments to 15,000-strong private companies.

He said that Symity’s rationale for the partnership is the ability to scale its strong technical capabilities.

“This was a meeting of minds,” he said. “We looked across the marketplace and chose the partner that would complement us the best. We didn’t want a bigger partner doing what we do to swallow us up.

“We realised that we’re great at what we do but when you start to grow an organisation it’s about sales and marketing operations, back-office processes… a lot of those things we weren’t particularly great at.

“Charterhouse will support us in doing what we do so well and enable us to grow at scale.

“We also needed a route to market for the more commodity products set. We’re keen to make sure people can benefit from the Microsoft experience, so we’re going to get a lot more complementary services like networking and cyber security.”

Symity has a team of 40 specialists, with operations across the globe in the likes of the US, Kenya and Hungary to provide 24/7 support.

Brooks-Wadham said this will complement the security operations centre which Charterhouse is currently building out.

Symity also has a strong adoption practice, Chambers said, which last year saw 30,000 individuals trained in online Teams sessions – one of which had 1,000 attendees during a single event.

The acquisition of DXP meanwhile, Brooks-Wadham said, is to increase Charterhouse’s presence in the North of England.

He said the team at Leigh-based DXP will be merged with St Helens-based Lloyds Business Communications, which Charterhouse acquired last February.

“There is an opportunity to cross-sell there because they don’t have capabilities around networking and cybersecurity,” he explained.

“What we’re trying to do is have the market-leading proposition across unified comms, networking and cyber – and be able to reach right across the nation in terms of support, deploying and advising.”

He said that Charterhouse has now grown to over £50m in annual turnover with around 250 employees.

These latest two acquisitions mean the company has made four acquisitions since taking on investment from August Equity in 2018.

Brooks-Wadham said we can expect to see further M&A activity in the not-too-distant future.

“Looking forward we would absolutely expect to be making more acquisitions this year. I don’t think we’ll be waiting till Christmas like we usually do! I’m hoping for some early Christmas presents.”



ChannelCorporate FinanceFinancial ServicesMergers and AcquisitionsMicrosoft TeamsSecurity and Compliance

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