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Dubai distributor Spectrami eyes M&A to become ‘an EMEA player’

Dubai-based network and security VAD Spectrami is set for an acquisition spree over the next 12 months as it looks to expand across Europe. Beside its office in Saudi Arabia, Spectrami launched in the United Kingdom late last year after securing investment from multibillion-dollar Abu Dhabi-based investment fund KBBO. Managing director Anand Choudha said Spectrami is « bullish » in its ambitions to grow the distributor out of the Middle East and across Europe. « The UK is the gateway to the European market, so we started with the UK operation last year, so now we’ve built a team of inside sales, channel account managers and a technical team » he said. « While we do this we are also expanding to other geographies – like we’re getting into Germany and Benelux – and that is more down the acquisition route, so we’re acquiring an existing company there and we’re also looking to make some acquisitions in the UK because of the support that we have. The idea is that, in the next two to three years, we will grow fivefold and be an EMEA player. That’s very aggressive growth and it won’t happen organically, so we have in our strategy acquisitions across EMEA. »

Choudha explained that the rationale behind the expansion into the UK and across the continent is the number of cybersecurity start-ups coming out of the US without any channel resources in Europe. He said that Spectrami will act as a « vendor extension« , helping to generate leads which will be passed back through the channel. Consolidation in the distribution market, he said, has left a gap in the market for specialist distributors. « If you look at the UK market, we felt that over the last few years a lot of acquisitions have happened and there is a strong gap in the security distribution space. There are a lot of start-ups coming in because there is a gap and we feel that, as we build a pan-European presence, it will give a very good reason for vendors to align with us, because they’ll get a single platform across the geographies and not have to talk to 10 distributors in 10 different countries. »

While Choudha could not disclose which UK distributors are on Spectrami’s radar, he said he is « actively talking to a few companies » with a particular focus on bringing new technologies to market – not on volume sales.

Hayley Roberts, managing director of UK security distributor Distology, welcomed the news of a new entrant to the market, saying the changing dynamics in distribution are creating a gap for more niche players: « people are going to start looking to come over because there are an awful lot of security vendors out there and I think what’s happening is that a lot of the broadliners are being gobbled up all over the place – and then you’ve got a few smaller ones like us and others that have just set up. But it’s not easy and if they haven’t got the contacts in the UK, the operational facilities, the relationships with the reseller base then it’s a difficult proposition – but I can see why the attraction would be there because there is a lot of technology out there which needs smaller, focused disties. » (source: Channelnomics Europe).