As the fourth addition to FluidOne’s branch network, project five creates a £30m revenue business unit bringing local IT Managed services to nearly 1000 Business IT customers.
London – 26th April 2023 – FluidOne, the market-leading provider of Connected Cloud solutions, has today announced the acquisition of award-winning Surrey based IT managed service provider, project five. Based in Camberley, project five provides outsourced IT services to small and medium size local businesses across Surrey, Berkshire and Hampshire.
This acquisition follows that of Highlander Computing Solutions in January 2023, and builds on FluidOne’s strategy to invest in regional IT MSPs to create a branch network for expertly delivered localised services for its SME customers. The investment in project five has created a £30m revenue Business IT Centre of Excellence (CoE) for FluidOne, with 930 customers, 134 employees and already with 4 branch offices led from Highlander’s Sheffield headquarters.
Project five will continue to benefit from the support and innovation of the founder, Steve Coburn, as he becomes consultant to the board. Rob Reed-Roberts, Commercial Director and Brad Cordell, Technical Director, will continue leading the project five teams, reporting to Steve Brown as Managing Director of the FluidOne Business IT CoE, ensuring that customers benefit from local account management and engineering, with best practise and a wider services portfolio supported by centralised leadership.
Commenting on the acquisition Russell Horton, FluidOne CEO, said:
“I am pleased to announce the acquisition of project five, that builds on our strategy to create a branch network for expertly delivered IT managed services to Business customers. When reviewing the business, I was impressed with the excellent service they deliver and the strength of relationships that the team build with their clients. This was reinforced by great customer feedback in our survey and a world class NPS of 80. They are a great fit to our strategy, and I look forward to working with Steve Coburn and the team to grow the Camberley business.”
Steve Coburn, project five Founder and Managing Director:
“This is an exciting chapter in the project five journey; when we first started having discussions with Russell, it was clear that our companies shared a common culture and values and a commitment to delivering great service. The FluidOne portfolio will broaden the service offering to our existing customers and the acquisition offers fantastic career opportunities to the project five team.”
Steve Brown, Highlander Computing Solutions Ltd. Managing Director, added:
“A fantastic addition to the group. Rob, Brad and the project five team will bring great expertise to the core of the Business IT CoE and as a group we are well placed to help them grow their base and further strengthen the proposition they can offer to their customers. We’re excited to be working with another quality and values driven business.”
Post-acquisition, FluidOne’s CEO, Russell Horton, is to become Chairman of project five, with FluidOne Directors Brendan Lynch, Chris Rogers and Roy Hastings also becoming board directors.
Established in 2006, FluidOne is an award-winning provider of Connected Cloud solutions with a £97m turnover and one of the consistently highest Net Promoter Scores (NPS) in the industry, securing 91 for March 2023. Underlying its services is FluidOne’s national fibre network, Platform One, which is the most connected network in the UK. FluidOne has a strong company culture enjoyed by 445 staff and was ranked as a 2 star accredited outstanding company to work for in the Best Companies to work for awards 2023.
FluidOne supports the needs of 2,200 customers, including 200 channel resellers, with services covering connectivity, SD-WAN, cyber security, IT managed services, mobile, IoT, UCaaS and CCaaS. FluidOne consults with its customers to design solutions that complement their in-house IT structures; taking complex hybrid multi-site environments, to make them simple and secure, so end-users can access their business applications wherever they are.
Led by CEO Russell Horton, co-founder and COO Chris Rogers, CFO Roy Hastings and CRO Brendan Lynch, the management team is backed by Livingbridge to support their ambitious long-term strategy.
About project five
Founded in 2003 by Managing Director Steve Coburn, the business started life delivering complex IT projects and over time expanded to delivering managed services to local businesses. Project five now supports the IT needs for 200 businesses, covering IT Helpdesk, End User Device Management, fully managed servers, Microsoft Azure, Office365, Professional Services, Cyber security, Unified Communications and networks. Project five employs 45 people, based at its flexible office in Camberley, Surrey, and prides itself on being one of the friendliest and easiest-to-understand IT support companies you will ever meet.
About Highlander Computing Solutions Ltd.
A long-established IT Expert, Highlander has, over the past 25 years, built upon its solid reputation as a leading supplier of enterprise IT infrastructure and professional services, through the addition of a dedicated in-house technical support team delivering IT managed services to the SME market. Under the leadership of Managing Director Steve Brown, the business has grown from £9.8m revenue to £23.7m since 2011.
Headquartered in Sheffield, supporting over 650 customers with 70 employees, Highlander has a vibrant working culture with high staff retention, and an impressive NPS of 87.