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Data Select sale to Brightstar expected this month

Michael Garwood
May 11, 2011

Distributor Brightstar is expected to confirm the acquisition of distribution rival Data Select this month with a deal now said to be signed

Brightstar Europe has now agreed a deal to buy Data Select following months of speculation Mobile News has been told.

Sources in Data Select and Brightstar claim the deal has now been signed and could be announced as early as Friday (May 13)

Neither Brightstar or Data Select would comment.

It is understood Data Select CEO George McPherson and Brightstar Europe president Rod Millar have held a series of meetings with senior member of the management team of Data Select about the future of the business.

Some senior staff have been offered financial inducements to stay with the company for at least six months its been claimed. The future of other executives is not yet known.

Several UK distributors say Data Select staff have contacted them about new employment opportunities.

Rod Millar is said to have have discussed any concerns from some members of staff about plans for the company. There are suggestions that Brightstar managing director for UK and Ireland Richard Turner will head up the business.

Turner and Millar were at the BlackBerry World event in Florida last week and neither were accepting calls at the time of going to press press.

Data Select is likely to retain its identity between three and six months before being absorbed in to Brightstar. A relocation plan is being examined for Brightstar to move some of its staff to Data Select offices in Marlow.

One source said: “The deal has been completed. They are now in a cooling off period. Many of the staff have learned their fate. No one is speculating who and how many will stay. But you can assume there will be significant duplication of positions.”

Data Select founder and chairman Peter Jones’ interest in the company has been described as minimal in the past year. Confirmation of the sale will end his 13-year tenure come to an end, having established the company in 1998.

Speculation on a potential sale has been rife at Data Select since the company moved to Slough, away from Jones’ main offices in Marlow. Jones’ last public appearance for Data Select was the launch of the JCB handset range in November.

The deal will make Brightstar the sole UK distributor with direct relationships with all major manufacturers. It is not known if Nokia included a ‘non-transfer’ clause in it agreement with Data Select giving it the right to terminate any distribution deal in the event of an acquisition.

Sources within Nokia have said it would be “unlikely” for the manufacturer to withdraw.

The acqusition of Brightstar will give the distributor a credible B2B mobile dealer channel for the first time as well as access to major accounts won by Data Select.

 

 

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