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By | Paul Kunert 23rd November 2012 15:54

Claranet gulps down rival STH in managed services merge

Deal valued at £55m

British managed services player Claranet has hoovered up rival STH Ltd and its subsidiary, Star Technology, in a deal it says values the acquired firm at £55m.

The fragmented mid-market MSP space is ripe for consolidation with numerous deals done this year including Redstone's acquisition of Maxima. And it's a space that many of the major vendors are chasing.

A chest-thumping Claranet CEO Charles Nasser tried to fly the flag for Blighty, describing the acquisition as a "British entrepreneurial success story".

The combined organisation will have group revenues of more than £120m, 700 staffers and 4,500 customers across the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the Iberian peninsula.

Customers of the joint firms include Airbus, Amnesty International, Channel 5, De Vere Hotels and Richmond Events.

While Claranet has concentrated on IaaS and virtual data centres, Star's push has been on unified comms, remote desktop and security services, so the new portfolio will span data centre to desktop services.

The exact buy price was not disclosed, but given the wording, it is likely that Claranet assumed STH's debts as a £55m valuation would seem steep, at least based the last set of available financials.

In the year to 31 July 2011, STH posted an operating loss of £1.58m, albeit narrower than the £3.556m losses recorded in the previous year. Sales grew 6 per cent to £45.9m.

As for Claranet, its UK numbers for the year to 30 June 2011 show a dip in revenues from £38.3m to £37m and an operating profit of £2.13m, up from £934,000. ®

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