Bristol technology company sold to international buyers
A leading provider of cloud unified communications and enterprise voice services based in Bristol has been acquired by a UK subsidiary of a French company owned by NTT Communications Corporation, following complex cross-border negotiations.
Applicable Limited, which has a large office in Stoke Gifford, Bristol, was acquired by a UK subsidiary of Arkadin SAS which is one of the world’s largest and fastest growing providers of unified communications (UC) and collaboration services based in France, and which is itself a subsidiary of Japanese-owned NTT Communications Corporation.
“We are thrilled to be joining Arkadin and are certain it will benefit all stakeholders, including our talented workforces and current and future customers,” said Applicable Managing Director, Alan Baldwin. “Our combined resources and shared passion for enabling organisations to collaborate, will successfully deliver integrated Microsoft UC services that meet the essential quality of experience requirements of enterprise customers. Arkadin’s global telephony and local approach to service, together with Applicable’s expertise, offer customers a complete UC service.”
Applicable’s shareholders were advised by the corporate and commercial team at law firm Royds Withy King in Bath, tax advisers at Bishop Fleming also in Bath and specialist technology M&A advisers ICON Corporate Finance.
Commenting on the sale, Katharine Mortimer, a partner at Royds Withy King in Bath, said: “This was an exciting and complex deal to work on with several international elements. In addition to its Bristol office, Applicable has a US subsidiary and an Australian branch so there were some interesting legal and tax issues to consider. We worked closely with Applicable’s shareholders on the share sale agreement, new articles and shareholders agreement which will see our clients become shareholders in the UK company. We wish them every success as they embark on the next stage of their journey.”
Paul Morris, tax partner at Bishop Fleming in Bath, added: “It was great to be part of the local team advising on this transaction and there were inevitably some complexities to resolve along the way. The acquisition of Applicable will no doubt generate exciting opportunities for the combined businesses going forward.”
Simon Moynagh, Director at ICON, commented: “We ran a full international M&A process and are delighted to have secured Arkadin/NTT Communications as the acquirer. Unified Communications is a rapidly growing market and this represents a significant deal for the sector.”
Applicable has a 12-year track record of successfully building, implementing and managing cloud-based Microsoft Lync and Skype for Business on behalf of large enterprises. The acquisition will enable Arkadin to expand its global reach and bring the value of unified communications services to large and global companies. Applicable’s expert team already hosts more than 330,000 unified communications users through its ‘ISO/IEC 27001:2013’ certified global private cloud platform.
Arkadin was advised by the Paris office of Travers Smith and Sentio Corporate Finance.
Media enquiries should be directed to Natalie Birrell, PR for Royds Withy King, on 07557 356860 or [email protected]