Belgian Microsoft specialist Codit has lifted the lid on its ambitions to open two more European offices in 2017.
The firm has gained a foothold in three countries this year after opening a UK office in Hampshire and a Swiss office in Zurich and buying its way into the Netherlands by acquiring Utrecht-based fellow Microsoft partner Axon Olympus. Codit also has offices in Paris and Lisbon.
CEO of the Ghent-based Microsoft specialist Stijn Degrieck said he is looking to move into two new western European territories by the end of 2017, singling out the Nordics as a prospective region.
"It has been our ambition to go more international," he said. "This year we opened offices in the UK and Switzerland, which should add extra revenue and margin. We also acquired our Dutch colleague which is a logical evolution of that ambition.
"The European market is one which is quite recognisable to us and we want to open two more offices in Europe by the end of 2017. We do not know [where we will expand] yet; there are some key areas of western Europe, such as the Nordics, where we can really have an impact."
"Given that we are in six European countries, I think that [we have] quite an international presence which we want to definitely expand. We want to do it step by step, not too fast. The most important priority is to deliver the quality of service that customers expect."
Degrieck said that with the help of the firm's two new office locations and the merger with Axon Olympus, he expects 2016 revenue to be in the region of €14m. He wants the company to reach revenues exceeding €25m by 2020.
The CEO said he expects the new Swiss business to generate 1m CHF (€0.92m) in revenue in 2016, whereas the acquired Netherlands business is forecast to generate €3m in sales by the end of the year.
Codit has attained Gold status with Microsoft in Application Development, Application Integration, and Cloud Platform and also gained a Silver accreditation in Data Analytics in July. Degrieck said he intends to bump up Codit's Microsoft Data Analytics competency to Gold within the next year.
"We only use Microsoft's technology as part of the solution that we take to the customer. Certification is one of our top priorities; we have broadened our portfolio a bit to API management, the Internet of Things and Azure solutions. There is huge growth potential in these investments," he said.
"We already have some IoT customers in the pipeline and already have the competencies and experience we need. IoT is currently a very immature market today but by 2017 companies will be more confident to invest."
The CEO said that Codit currently generates around five to 10 per cent of its profits through Azure IT solutions. By 2020, Degrieck is looking to push Azure contracts to account for 25 to 30 per cent of the firm's bottom line.
"This is a huge challenge for us, but we are confident," he said. "We will stick to our core strengths in integration, IoT and Azure solutions. Any Microsoft competency that is compatible with that strategy is something we will focus on."
When asked whether Codit intends to grow its business through more M&A, Degrieck said there is nothing in the pipeline but he would not rule out the option.
"We do not have any acquisitions on the radar. Our plan is to concentrate on organic growth over the next couple of years," he said.
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