In July 2017, Contraste Europe and Audaxis will join forces within the Contraste Europe Group, strong of more than 450 people and with a turnover of €45m.
The complementarity of the two entities will allow the Group to strengthen its leading position in Belgium, and to significantly increase its presence in Luxembourg, France and Switzerland.
Audaxis, with close to 130 people and €9m turnover, established in 2000, offers high added value solutions in the areas of web-based applications, ERP and Data Intelligence, supporting its clients in their development and in their digital transformation. Audaxis' specialists are highly trained and experienced. Audaxis' services include cloud-based ERP solutions, open source ERP solutions, data intelligence solutions, web-based and mobile solutions. Audaxis provides, among others, NetSuite (a cloud-based ERP, recently acquired by Oracle), Compiere (an open source ERP used by a large base of small and medium businesses), Talend, Drupal (an open source CMS), Drupal Commerce and MaPs (a Product Information System).
Audaxis also operates an offshore development centre located in Tunis. The relatively short distance and the same timezone offer great flexibility and efficiency.
Audaxis was established in 2000 by some of the managers still active in the enterprise, together with the Rossel group, acting as a reference shareholder. Thanks to the partnership with Rossel, Audaxis could become a recognised expert of the digital experience in Belgium, France and Luxembourg. It brings significant skills and experiences to the newly consolidated group.
The Contraste Europe Group, under the leadership of Benoît Pirotte, was founded in 1994 and is today present in Belgium, Luxembourg and France. It employs 350 specialists and generates a turnover of €35m. Contraste offers advisory services, application development services and infrastructure services. It counts among its clients large enterprises from the financial sector (AXA, BNP, ING, KBC, Generali, Euroclear, Ethias, Degroof Petercam), telcos and utilities (VOO, WIN, Sibelga, Encevo), as well as public and non-profit organisations (INAMI/RIZIV, ACV/CSC, SPW, SPF/FOD, CIRB/CIBG). Its subsidiary defimedia, specialised in digital experience, serves a large base of small and medium-sized enterprises.
The companies are getting together by a mix of share purchase and exchange. It will bring Audaxis' management right into the group's decision centre and will allow a fast and effective integration. It will also allow positive and dynamic moves in all parts of the Group.
The Rossel Group, client and major partner for Audaxis, will be represented as shareholder, and in the Contraste Group's Board, by Bernard Marchant.
The industrial project is to optimise the Group's competencies, and to offer to all clients and prospects the whole range of services and solutions of all Group's entities.
Contraste Europe already acquired the activities of BTR Services in early 2016. With this new project, it confirms its ambition for growth, supported both by organic evolution and mergers and acquisitions.
Joining forces will mean expanding activities and opening new opportunities, thanks to the increased size and broadened scope of the Group.
The complementarity of activities will be strengthened by the contribution of each entity's assets:
- Geographically: the Contraste Group will increase its presence in Belgium, Luxembourg and France, as well as in Switzerland;
- The addressed market: Contraste will merge the teams working at common clients, and Audaxis' important large accounts will become part of Contraste's client base.
- The services offered: Contraste's services portfolio is articulated around 3 dimensions: Advisory Services, Application Services and managed Infrastructure Services. Audaxis' activities will be integrated in these, and this will allow the service Portfolio to be extended with a 4th dimension: Solution Services. These will include, among others, Cloud Based ERP, Open Source ERP, and Data Intelligence.
- For the workforce of both entities, this merger will offer new career development opportunities, with an international, multilingual group, active in a broad range of technologies and services.
For Contraste Europe, this is a significant step in a strategic growth roadmap to position the group in the European IT landscape, which is consolidating around major players and competence centres.
The clients of the Contraste Europe Group will have access to a wider range of services, with the addition of a company that is demonstrating for the last 17 years a strong continuity, financial stability and consistent growth strategy.
Bernard de Cannière, CEO of Audaxis, will join the Contraste Europe Board of Management, in close cooperation with Benoît Pirotte, CEO of Contraste Europe.