Exertis UK boss: We may never integrate Hammer

Exertis has pledged to take a different approach with Hammer than it has with previous acquisitions by running it as a standalone business indefinitely.

After years - if not decades - of sporadic dialogue, the Basingstoke duo have finally shaken hands on a £38.3m deal that will bolster Exertis' clout in the enterprise storage and server market.

Exertis UK and Ireland managing director, Gerry O'Keeffe, told CRN that Exertis has no intention of tinkering with Hammer or its management, which would mark a contrast to the approach it has taken with some other acquisitions.

"The conversation we were having over a pint when we finally signed on the dotted line yesterday is: what happens in 2030?," he said.

"That's the timeframe we're talking about in terms of the Hammer management and where they will lead the business into the next decade."

Exertis and Hammer both work with Dell but O'Keeffe maintained there was minimal overlap between the duo's portfolios or customer bases, and said running Hammer as a standalone business would ensure that specialism is not diluted. "We're talking about an extended period of time. Two, three years - and beyond,"" he said. ""It may never be right to integrate it; we don't know what the future holds in that regard."

"With other acquisitions, there may be a significant crossover with regard to the customer estate and range of vendors, which means it's right to integrate.

That isn't the case with Hammer. Hammer has been hugely successful because of the focus it brings to the vendors it represents. We totally respect that and we wouldn't do anything to risk damaging that. There's a great opportunity for the sales teams to work together to deliver additional products to each customer base - that's where we see the opportunity.

That involves lots of close working together, but it's important we retain the thing that has made Hammer successful."

The recent rash of distributor consolidation may worry some resellers but O'Keeffe said keeping Hammer separate would mean the two sets of resellers will see no changes to credit teams or credit lines.

Source: Hammer
Published Date: 14/10/2016

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