Daisy buys two more for £20m


B2B specialist Daisy Communications continued its rampaging consolidation of the reseller market and drive towards a fully converged SME proposition last week with the £20.5 million twin-acquisition of AT Communications and Eurotel.

The Lancashire-based business will absorb the assets and customers of both, which were in administration at purchase.

Halifax-based telecoms and IT supplier Eurotel was purchased for £13.5 million. In the year ending March 31, Eurotel’s unaudited results recorded £30.2 million in revenue and £3.5 million EBITDA. Eurotel sells fixed line, mobile and broadband.

Harlow-based SME IP reseller AT Communications was purchased for £7 million. In the year ending December 31 2008, audited revenue and EBITDA were £52.9 million and £5.3 million respectively.

Daisy chief executive Matthew Riley (pictured) said: “These transactions are the first steps for Daisy in executing its strategy to consolidate the fragmented reseller market and become a dominant force in the SME and mid-market arena. Both companies have good reputations within the industry and will support Daisy in delivering an excellent service in all areas of communications, further strengthening our converged product set and enhancing our offering to the UK business community.”

Daisy was advised by law firm Eversheds. Legal representative Keith Froud said: “Daisy has an acquisition strategy. I don’t think buying companies in administration is a specific part of the strategy; it is just a market driven effect. Daisy is looking for further acquisition opportunities.”

Daisy chairman Peter Dubens said: “The acquisitions support our strategy for providing a converged product set to this target market.”

Meanwhile, Daisy has appointed Ian Butcher as non-executive director of its board. A chartered accountant, Butcher was group finance director of UK transport service provider The Go-Ahead Group between 1996 and 2007.

The purchases follow the £206 million reverse takeover of Daisy by AIM-listed broadband provider Freedom4 Group last month. Freedom4 bought Daisy for £81 million, with Riley pocketing £30 million in cash and £51 million in shares. At the same time,

Freedom4 Group acquired voice and data reseller Vialtus for £42 million and raised a further £83 million by way of a share placing. The merged business provides mobile, fixed line and broadband services to SMEs under the Daisy Communications brand.