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CHA finally secured by CHS

CHA finally secured by CHS

SYDNEY - After about a year of procrastinating, giant US electronics distributor CHS has announced today it has completed the acquisition of Computer Hardware of Australia (CHA).

With revenues in excess of $100 million, CHA is reportedly the third-largest wholesale distributor of IT products in Australia.

As previously reported (ARN, February 3, page 1), the terms of the acquisition include a purchase price to be determined by the performance of the business over the next two years. It is understood that business targets have been agreed on for the next 12 and 24 months.

As well as being Toshiba's largest distributor on a national basis, Melbourne-based CHA distributes Acer, Canon, Xircom, Iomega, 3Com, Citrix, Philips and Network Associates.

Roger Bushell, managing director of CHA, claimed: "Our affiliation with CHS Electronics will help us to establish new relationships with key vendors in the region and expand our customer base, while also maintaining our identity and franchise on a local level."

It's been an interesting 12 months for CHA and Bushell, busily consolidating the five acquisitions it had made up to this time last year into a substantial national distribution entity.

But while declining to reveal any financial details of the buyout, Bushell acknowledged that a few extra grey hairs will have been worth it and that he was very happy with the deal.

He said that while the company would continue to trade as CHA for the time being, and gradually introduce the CHS name, the acquisition would not make any immediate difference to the way it operated.

Unrelated to the acquisition and effective immediately, the structure of CHA is now two divisions: Volume Products, which is based in Sydney and headed up by Paul Williams, and Enterprise Group, based in the Melbourne head office and led by Queenslander Mark Ganon.

Bushell added that all the regional marketing activities are now consolidated and managed out of head office.

After the excitement of the deal settles, Bushell expects to take a few days off and consider what to do with the money. He'll have plenty of time because the final price will not be determined until July 2001.


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