Alviva's growth strategy built on a digital foundation - TechCentral

Alviva’s growth strategy built on a digital foundation

Pierre Spies

The technology space has evolved greatly in recent few years and is likely to undergo an even more significant evolution in the coming decade.

For this reason, Alviva has developed its long-term strategy to enable it to keep pace with these changes. Having its foundation in IT distribution, the company has been reinvesting both in itself,through share repurchases and in selected IP-based businesses.

IT distribution remains core, having evolved over the years from moving desktops and notebooks to crafting solutions, including cybersecurity and enterprise-level solutions through its enterprise product offering.

Alviva has taken a long-term view of the industry, basing its future growth strategy on targeted acquisitions in the digital technology space. It has purchased three IP-based businesses in the past 18 months, the first of which is an artificial intelligence company that is a key role player in driving digital transformation and by “cloning human expertise”.

The second is a provider of robotic process automation (RPA) solutions. SynergERP has an RPA division that is designed to boost customers’ efficiencies. SynergERP sells business efficiency as opposed to merely enterprise resource planning tools. Having understood the need for business efficiency through digital transformation, the acquisition of SynergERP is well placed to realise the opportunities that are opening up in this space.

Business efficiency

The third IP-based business we have acquired is Sintrex. Factors which influenced our decision to invest included Sintrex’s ability to monitor IT infrastructure, asset lifecycle management, applications and users, as well as service-level agreements. Again, these factors are key to managing business efficiency.

New acquisitions, which align with the Alviva strategy, are assisted to reach scale through entry into new markets both locally and abroad. In addition, acquisitions are corporatised while maintaining an entrepreneurial mindset.

As part of our growth strategy, we also purchased a business last year called Tricon Services, which has some 240 data centre engineers throughout Africa. Tricon has access to IT skills in 29 countries across Africa, and we are able to leverage this base from which to drive additional products and solutions into these markets.

We have been specific about how we expand. The focus is never on buying an entity simply because it is profitable; rather we carefully consider all angles and what we consider the strategic opportunities to be, together with the long-term prospects. We always consider the entrepreneurial aspects and how we can retain that thinking while taking the acquired company to the next level.

As regards offshore expansion, instead of making offshore acquisitions which have proven to be very expensive, we prefer to grow our existing footprint into overseas markets where it makes sense.

There is no doubt that AI offers enormous opportunities in countries like the US, UK and Australia, and we are already witnessing success in these territories. A good example is one of the world’s largest professional services firms, which has signed up as a reseller and implementer of our technology in Australia, the US, the UK and Middle East.

With its strong focus on IP-based businesses — particularly those that deliver digital technologies like AI and RPA – coupled with the desire to actively scale and corporatise these businesses, and an offshore model that is creating new opportunities for growth, Alviva’s strategy is looking promising.

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