Provider of integrated digital commerce services through merger with Descom
In June 2015, we announced that Solteq would purchase Descom, a Finnish provider of IT and digital marketing services.
Descom’s main business included multichannel sales solutions and the development of its clients’ electronic marketing. The company acquisition made Solteq a software house of 500 experts that provides integrated digital commerce services.
The acquisition was in line with Solteq’s strategy, and the merger created a basis for building a new business entity with operations in Finland, other Nordic countries and northern Central Europe. The result of the merger was a company with a solution and service offering that covers multichannel and digital commerce from procurement to physical stores and online retail operations. The service offerings of the two companies complemented each other well with no major overlapping. Consequently, the new entity is able to provide an excellent overall offering to the current and new clients. The merger offers several growth possibilities related to the business operations of the existing clients and enables us to provide solutions and services to a larger number of clients than before.
Before the merger, Solteq and Descom implemented projects for the same clients, and both companies also had clients of their own. The merger provides the clients of both companies with benefits in the form of a wider overall offering. The new company is able to offer the customers of its clients better services and thereby contribute to their success.
The sellers in the deal were funds managed by Sentica Partners Oy, Aidacom Partners Oy, Corpinghouse Oy and Descom’s individual investors. As the result of the company acquisition, Solteq’s ownership structure changed and Sentica Partners became the majority shareholder of the company. In the arrangement, some of the old major individual shareholders of the company, for instance, Ali Saadetdin, reduced their holdings, but they still have significant stakes in the company. The change in the ownerships structure ensures the continuity of the company’s operations. The new ownership structure is reflected in the company’s strategy as stronger and faster growth goals with due consideration to the maintenance of the company’s profitability and strong balance sheet structure.
The integration process started immediately after the deal was finalised, and the aim was to start operations as a new company on 1 January 2016. Descom Group’s figures were consolidated with Solteq’s figures as from 2 July 2015. At the beginning of the integration process, the objective was 2 million euro synergy gains in the costs not allocated to client work by the end of the integration process. Most of the synergy savings are estimated to materialise in the result for 2016.
Descom in brief
Descom Group is a Finnish provider of IT and digital marketing services. Descom’s main business includes multichannel sales solutions and the development of its clients’ electronic marketing. Apart from the parent company, Descom Group Oy, the Descom Group includes Descom Oy, which is responsible for the Group’s business operations in Finland and subsidiaries in Sweden, Poland and Denmark.
In the area of multi-channel sales, the company delivers multi-channel e-commerce and store systems as well as order and product data management solutions. The purpose of multichannel sales is not only to combine the sales channels of physical stores and digital channels but also to allow the creation of entirely new business and customer service models.
In electronic marketing, Descom’s core solutions consist of search engine optimisation and advertising, conversion optimisation, and analytics and customer experience solutions. Electronic marketing services improve the findability of web pages and utilise customer data and analytics, for instance, to increase the sizes of online shopping baskets.
Descom also offers its clients application development, integration and maintenance services.
At the time of purchase, Descom Group had a total of 240 employees in Finland, Sweden and Poland. Since its establishment in 1997, Descom had grown through company acquisitions and organic growth. It had been an IBM partner for almost 20 years and an IBM Premier Business Partner since 2003. The Descom Data Center Solutions business was not included in the purchase.