365 iT plc announce the acquisition of 5i Limited

Established in 2002, 5i is a leading UK provider of high level, consultancy-led, Cisco and Microsoft based Unified Communications (UC) solutions. Working closely with its channel partners, 5i has delivered over 150 UC solutions to corporate and multi-national customers.

5i’s award winning Unified Communications solutions encompass complex messaging, mobility, real time communications, telephony, contact centres, multi media, collaboration, conferencing and video technologies across multiple communication modes and devices under a single managed support contract.

This acquisition brings into the 365 iT group one of Cisco’s leading UK partners in UC, enabling the group to address a growing market demand created by new emerging technologies and the significant shortage of skills in these areas.

Comms Business Magazine understands from mergers and acquisition company Nortons who brokered the deal, this is one of the first bank leveraged buy-outs to get away this year (RBS) and is testament to the companies and management teams involved.

Announcing the agreement, Peter MacLean, 365 iT’s chairman and chief exec, said: “This is the next step in the evolution of our service portfolio and sees us entering a new phase in our development as we continue our ambitious growth and acquisition strategy. The deal enables 365 iT to focus on its core strengths and to deliver UC services and solutions to a growing number of UK businesses including our existing substantial customer base.”

MacLean continued: “The UC market is strategically very important to 365 iT. Aside from acquisitions, we are seeking to maintain an organic growth rate in excess of 15% per annum. 5i significantly strengthens our capability in the UC field and will help facilitate our overall group development objectives. Through the acquisition of 5i, we are strengthening our strategy to enable our customers to maximise the functionality and return on their investment in their IT infrastructure. 5i will continue to trade under its well established brand and its existing management team will continue to lead the business forward with same business model and solutions portfolio which has ensured its success in the past”.

Peter Howells, 5i’s managing director, said: “Becoming part of an ambitious IT services group was a natural progression for our business and it fits with our strategy for continued growth both in terms of profitable revenues and the extended services our partners and their customers demand.”

Howells continued: “Foremost in 5i’s mind was the need to ensure that our partners and customers will continue to receive the highest standards in solution delivery and customer service. We firmly believe 365 iT is the best partner to deliver against this requirement given their recent performance and strength in the marketplace.”

5i will retain its name and brand and will trade as a wholly owned subsidiary of 365 iT plc