NexInnovations gains Labatts, Toyota business

NexInnovations Thursday said it would gain new enterprise customers like Labatt Breweries and Toyota Motor Manufacturing through the purchase of the Canadian assets of Netigy for an undisclosed sum.

Though the buyout brings NexInnovations only 11 people, president and CEO Hubert Kelly said the new personnel will add to the depth of the company’s professional services expertise.

“Our scope of professional services is really around infrastructure, internetworking, storage. But really professional advice in those areas as it builds out for the rest of our hardware and services business. ” he said. “What Netigy brought us was a very select group of people who have been working with some good clients here in Canada and worked on those clients on capacity planning around their infrastructure.”

NexInnovations, formerly a wholly-owned subsidiary of EDS Corp., split from its corporate parent in June. The company employs about 14,000 people in Canada.

Kelly said financial troubles at Netigy in the U.S. sparked the buyout discussions.

“It came together very quickly,” he said. “They’ve gone through a significant restructuring and the company, though it was progressing well, ran into the same problem many technology companies have run into in the last year, and that’s raising further capital.”

The companies that Netigy was talking to about potential partnerships were not interested in the Canadian operations, Kelly added. “Though some of the investment bankers that we have gotten to know through the transaction, they thought we would be a logical partner for them.”

Netigy could not be reached for comment at press time.

Kelly said there was virtually no customer overlap between the two firms. Netigy will actually bring more clients to NexInnovations, but Kelly said confidentiality issues prohibited him from naming them, apart from a vague reference to a “very large mining company.”

Though NexInnovations already employs close to 100 people in professional services, he said Netigy is good at helping enterprises prepare their infrastructure to support the future direction of e-business interaction with their clients and other business associates.

NexInnovations has no immediate plans for further acquisitions this year, Kelly said.

“Nothing is on the radar screen yet, but if you’d asked me the same question two weeks ago I would have given you the same answer,” he said. “I won’t say we’re not looking.”

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