German telecom giant KOMSA AG and British broadliner Westcoast wish to establish a close strategic partnership to benefit even more from the technology trends 5G mobile standard, cloud computing and mobile working. With a combined turnover of more than €5.5B, KOMSA and Westcoast will become the largest private sales, marketing and service partner for global brands in the technology industry in Europe. In the course of the merger, Westcoast will take over the shares from KOMSA's founders.
Retail partners as well as technology partners will benefit from the strategic partnership of the two leaders in their respective markets. "The main driver is the convergence of the IT and telecommunications infrastructure, which opens up completely new applications and productivity gains for companies”, explains Pierre-Pascal Urbon, CEO and CFO of KOMSA. A current example is the integration of cloud-based collaboration software such as Microsoft Teams into the infrastructures already existing at the company level. "In order to realise the productivity gains, you need the right equipment, services as well as professional advice. By merging with Westcoast, we are able to enrich our sector expertise in telecommunications with IT. This is of high strategic value to us, as it allows us to offer our customers a unique range of services and pass onto them the efficiencies generated by the merger.”
In addition, the merger gives KOMSA access to markets in France, Ireland and the United Kingdom, where it has not been significantly active to date. The company will use the regional expansion to strengthen its business relationship with technology partners and to market the lease and operation of smartphones (device-as-a-service) on an international scale. "KOMSA is about to take the biggest development step in the company's history", summarises Kerstin Grosse, chairwoman of KOMSA’s supervisory board.
Through the new partnership between two leading sales, marketing and service specialists in their respective markets, the largest European alliance for privately owned global ICT brands will come into existence. With their workforce of more than 2,200 employees, both companies generate a turnover of more than €5.5B and bring together more than 400 technology partners with 30,000 retail partners and a total of more than 75,000 points of sale.
"In combination with the logistical strength of both companies, the joint technology expertise to link IT and TC and the expertise around repair and refurbishment, we help industry, trade and business to participate in technological progress", says Joe Hemani, chairman and founder of Westcoast. "KOMSA also contributes extensive knowledge in the area of unified communications into our partnership, and also its specific know-how in setting up agile structures is of strategic importance for Westcoast. The fact that we are thus participating in KOMSA beyond the partnership is a strong signal and confirms our continued commitment and trust in the ICT industry. We will bring our know-how from the highly competitive IT market to the world of telecommunications, which will improve the customer experience and range of available services. With access to the German growth market, where we have not been significantly active to date, we are also strategically expanding our market position."
The merger is still subject to the approval by the competent authorities. The first closing is expected for January 2023. Within the process, KOMSA’s founders and owners will settle the company succession: Westcoast will take over their shares step by step by 2025 at the latest. After the closing, Gunnar Grosse and Jürgen Unger will cease to be members of the Supervisory Board, whereas Kerstin Grosse will remain chairwoman of the Supervisory Board. KOMSA’s Management Board remains unchanged, and Pierre-Pascal Urbon will, after the closing, additionally become Westcoast’s Chairman of the Board of Directors.