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Avnet has acquired Bell Microproducts for roughly $594 million. The Avnet deal values Bell Micro at $7 a share -- more than a 30 percent premium compared to last week's Bell Micro close. The distributor deal potentially strengthens Avnet's position in the storage industry. Next, The VAR Guy will be watching to see if Bell Micro and the Avnet Technology Solutions (ATS) business unit find some synergies.

The VAR Guy

March 29, 2010

2 Min Read
Avnet Acquires Bell Micro for Storage Distribution Expertise

Avnet has acquired Bell Microproducts for roughly $594 million. The Avnet deal values Bell Micro at $7 a share — more than a 30 percent premium compared to last week’s Bell Micro close. The distributor deal potentially strengthens Avnet’s position in the storage industry. Next, The VAR Guy will be watching to see if Bell Micro and the Avnet Technology Solutions (ATS) business unit find some synergies.

Let’s start with the Avnet-Bell Micro combo. According to an Avnet spokeswoman, Bell Microproducts is “the world’s largest storage-centric value-added distributor.” This is the largest acquisition in Avnet’s history in terms of revenue, and it will increase its scale and scope in Europe, North America and Latin America.

Avnet already has some core storage expertise, as part of the Avnet Technology Solutions StoragePath effort.

The spokeswoman adds:

“With revenues of approximately $3.0 billion in CY 2009, Bell Micro has international operations that focus on a wide range of high-tech products, solutions and services including storage systems, servers, software, computer components, and peripherals, as well as maintenance and professional services.”

But therein lies the rub. Bell Micro may have $3 billion in annual revenues, but the company was only worth about $600 million — showing just how difficult it is for distributors to bolster their valuations these days.

Meanwhile, The VAR Guy will be checking to see what the Avnet-Bell Micro deal means to VAR sales management systems like VARStreet, QuoteWerks and Quosal, which plug into various distributor systems for more efficient product sourcing and procurement.

Autotask acquired VARStreet in mid-March 2010, and some VARs have been reevaluating their quoting tools in recent weeks.

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