Datatec’s chief executive, Jens Montanana, says the purchase is a significant step. Photo: Leon Nicholas
Durban - International information and communication technology (ICT) group Datatec has announced that its subsidiary, Logicalis Group, has acquired a 51 percent stake in NubeliU for an undisclosed amount.

The company said it bought the stake at NubeliU, a South American-based company specialising in cloud computing projects based on OpenStack, yesterday, making it the second acquisition by Logicalis in less than two weeks following the conclusion of a 54percent stake in Indonesian company Packet Systems Indonesia for $6.8million (R89.28m) towards the end of last month.

Datatec chief executive Jens Montanana said the purchase of the NubeliU stake was an important step in the company’s quest to spread its wings across the globe.

“This acquisition is an important step for Logicalis to enhance its position as a leading cloud integrator,” said Montanana.

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Datatec said the acquisition was part of Logicalis’s strategy to position itself as a cloud integrator as it strengthens its commitment to the open source community, in particular with OpenStack, essential for large software defined everything (SDx) and cloud computing.

NubeliU was founded in January 2015 by the team that deployed the first production clouds in OpenStack, which is seen as one of the foundations for the industry’s future infrastructure. Datatec said NubeliU integrated OpenStack environments with customers’ existing platforms across multiple vendor product lines.

Global offerings

The company said from its operations in Argentina and Brazil, NubeliU was able to deliver its service offerings remotely around the globe.

“This acquisition forms the basis for establishing a Logicalis Global OpenStack practice. NubeliU’s expertise in OpenStack will accelerate the global expansion of Logicalis’s cloud computing and SDx practices, strengthening its position as a cloud integrator and ensuring its ability to meet its customers’ requirements on their journey to digital transformation,” added Montanana.

It remains to be seen whether the recent acquisitions will boost the group’s earnings in the future.

Logicalis is one of Datatec’s main divisions. It is an infrastructure solutions and services unit which accounts for 25 percent of Datatec revenue. The other main division is Westcon-Comstor, a distributor of security, unified communications, networking and data-centre products.

Weston-Comstor accounts for 74 percent of the group’s revenue. The minor division is corporate, consulting and financial services, which accounts for 1 percent of the revenue.

At the end of May, Datatec reported a decline in profits for the year to end February as its trading during the period was materially affected in the last quarter by the roll-out of the SAP ERP system and BPO across Westcon-Comstor’s operations in the Europe, Middle East and Africa and Asia-Pacific regions.

As a result, the group reported revenue of $6.08 billion, down from $6.45bn, while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation came in at $118.9m.

Datatec shares dropped 1.10percent on the JSE on Tuesday to close at R59.34.