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Big M&A: Avaya Rumors, Evolve IP, Private Equity Trend

Money Bag

Private equity firms love the channel right now.

Out of our nine M&A stories from the last two months, almost half involve investment companies buying an IT or telecommunications company. A publicly traded holding company bought master agent Colotraq, Suse gained its independence thanks to EQT Partners buying it, and Avaya fielded a buyout offer from another firm.

As MartinWolf’s Seth Collins describes it later on in this gallery, there’s a perfect storm brewing for the marriage of private equity and B2B technology.

Scroll through the gallery below to see various 10-figure deals that could have enormous channel impact. The acquired companies plan to expand their partner and customer bases as a result of new funding and resources.

Missed the previous recap? Check out the February M&A roundup.

Growth
Evolve IP

Evolve IP welcomed a speech analytics and natural-language technology company into its fold.

Jog.ai provides an application that helps compliance-heavy industries with call recording, transcription and documentation. Evolve IP’s chief technology officer said the acquisition gives it a leg up on the competition with an additional differentiator. He suggested companies in health care, legal and financial verticals as key customers that will appreciate Jog.ai's features.

Learn more about the purchase.

Growth
Avaya

Rumors about Avaya swirled around in March and April.

We first learned that a private equity firm offered to buy out the unified communications company for $5 billion. That rumor did not seem to materialize, and we next heard that Mitel had proposed a $2.4 billion merger. The deal would be the latest in a long series of Mitel M&A activity. Mitel tried hard to acquire Polycom for a similar price in 2016; Polycom eventually fell into Plantronics' hands.

Read about Mitel's reported offer.

Growth
Colotraq

Aluf Holdings purchased the New Jersey-headquartered master agency for colo, managed hosting, cloud and network services.

Colotraq is expanding the reach of its "sales enablement platform" thanks to the purchase. The acquisition has since finalized, and Colotraq's CEO is now the CEO of Aluf.

Aluf is said to seek out companies that specialize in biometrics and blockchain technologies.

Read about the transaction involving Colotraq.

Growth
Jabra

The headphone company's sound expertise has combined with Altia Systems' video technology.

GN Audio, which owns Jabra, finished buying Altia in March. Jabra’s vice president of sales operations declared that the marriage will create the “most collaborative conference call technology on the market." GN is targeting the growing huddle room market, he said.

Learn why GN decided to purchase Altia Systems.

Growth
Sprint-T-Mobile

The plot continues to thicken for the proposed transaction between the third and fourth largest carriers in North America.

A Wall Street Journal report cited U.S. Department of Justice officials saying that the agency won't approve the deal unless it undergoes major changes. Sprint and T-Mobile last year agreed to a $26 billion deal that would put T-Mobile CEO John Legere atop the combined company. 


Get details on the potential showdown.

Growth
NTT Security

The NTT Group subsidiary will buy WhiteHat.

WhiteHat’s chief revenue office told us that the agreement gives WhiteHat access to a more global customer base, as WhiteHat sells primarily in North America while NTT Security has a "global presence." NTT Security said together they will provide the "most comprehensive end-to-end cybersecurity solutions" in the world.

WhiteHat will continue to operate independently following the acquisition.

Edward Gately wrote about the it.
Growth
Kemp

A private equity firm acquired the load balancer and application delivery controller provider.

Kemp Technologies came under the leadership of Mill Point Capital, although it retained its CEO and management team. The goal is take advantage of new resources from Mill Point to “expand our addressable market with a combination of organic growth and M&A," according to Kemp's CEO.

Edward Gately has the scoop.

Growth
Suse

Micro Focus no longer owns the open source and Linux vendor.

EQT announced in March that its $2.5 billion acquisition of Suse is final. The investment company said last year that it would buy Suse and allow it to become an independent company. Suse said it will grow relationships with partners and customers and improve its focus on open-source-based enterprise products.

Check out Todd Weiss' story on Channel Futures.
Growth
'Thunderous M&A'

A perfect storm of consolidation is raging in the IT/telecom industry, according to martinwolf's Seth Collins.

Available capital, hot demand for technology and the eagerness of private equity firms is driving the M&A streak, Collins said. He warned, however, that not everyone is feeling so bullish about the economy and that a potential downturn in the market could significantly impact deal-making.

Collins described the phenomenon in a presentation at the recent Channel Partners Conference & Expo. 

Read TC Doyle's recap of Collins' talk

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