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Update: Computacenter set to acquire insolvent Thesaurus

Microscope contributor

Computacenter is understood to be in exclusive negotiations with IBM z series player Thesaurus and is expected to acquire the company today or at the latest early next week.

 

MicroScope understands that directors at the Milton-Keynes based integrator have been negotiating with a number of suitors, after a dramatic downturn in sales left the firm struggling to service its circa £5m debt with RBS and pay suppliers.

 

However channel insiders reckon that corporate giant Computacenter, which yesterday forked out €2m in cash for German IBM house becom Informationssysteme, is very close to striking a deal.

 

"This is not something that is likely to materially change the direction of Computacenter but Thesaurus has built up a z series services business which adds to the portfolio," said a source.

 

It offers a range of services including managed operations, hosting solutions, software support, on demand and data centre as a service. In addition to IBM, it also partners HP, EMC and NetApp.

 

The firm, which was established in 1987 and employs around 50 staff, states on its website that it sells mainly to blue-chip corporate and high-end SMB clients including Toyota and Birmingham City University.

 

In the last filed accounts for the year to 30 June 2008, Thesaurus achieved £13.9m in sales, down 30% year-on-year, with services accounting for half of revenues. It made a £256,000 loss compared to a £547,000 profit in fiscal 2007.

 

In a report, accompanying the results the directors described 2008 as a "disappointing year from a technology perspective, with delays in the launch of the new IBM z series mainframes impacting full year results".

 

It is believed that the firm has since been hit by the slowdown in major projects and like many resellers/ integrators of a similar ilk has started to run out of cash.

 

Computacenter, which told MicroScope it planned to acquire several businesses at the time it sold CCD last month, was unavailable to comment. Thesaurus was also unavailable to comment at the time of going to press.


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