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Avnet acquires Acal plc’s IT solutions division

Avnet Inc. today announced that it will acquire the IT solutions division of Acal plc., a strategic move that pushes Avnet’s distribution channels further into Europe and shores up its storage offerings to customers in the European Union. 

Acal IT Solutions is a leading value-added distributor for storage area networking (SAN), secure networking and electronic document management products and services. Acal IT Solutions has operations in the UK, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France and Sweden, and the division will be integrated into Avnet Technology Solutions’ EMEA business, but not before the transaction is approval by Acal shareholders and EU merger control clearance.

Avnet has outlined a strategy of growing our business by delivering complete solutions to our partners around the globe,” said Vincent Keenan, Avnet’s vice president and director, investor relations.  “The acquisition brings us new supplier relationships and ultimately more storage solutions for VARs in Europe by offering a broader line of products. For the U.S. there is no immediate impact,” Keenan added.

With the deal Avnet will assume an additional 2,000 Acal resellers and system integrators as well as 180 experienced personnel that design and install complex storage networking systems and document management requirements.

Acal IT Solutions markets a wide range of storage networking, networking and fibre channel products from several manufactures including Brocade, Cisco, Emulex, Juniper and Qlogic and document management products from Canon, Fujitsu and Kodak.

“The acquisition does not specifically impact the cost of storage products, but does give Avnet’s partners in
Europe the opportunity to offer a wider variety of complete storage solutions to their customers, potentially increasing their revenue and growth,” Keenan said.

Another benefit to Avnet will be Acal IT Solutions’ Headway Technology Group, which focuses on document management and storage with a portfolio of products including document capture software, scanners, optical, CD and DVD storage hardware and software and tape backup solutions.

Additionally, the acquisition will bring to Avnet a value-added services unit that provides network infrastructure planning,  implementation and training as well as technical support.

Acal IT Solutions’ revenue was approximately $200 million in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2007.

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Makes sense... acquisitions for Cisco business is the building block for Cisco’s future growth and competitive edge.