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Cloudreach To Buy Relus Cloud, Creating Cross-Atlantic Channel Powerhouse

The U.K.-headquartered consultancy is looking to expand its reach in the U.S. while adding analytics and AI expertise sought by enterprises

International cloud services consultancy Cloudreach has agreed to buy Relus Cloud in a deal that will create a powerhouse in the Amazon Web Services channel that spans the Atlantic.

London-headquartered Cloudreach already has a strong North American presence, including an office not far from Relus headquarters outside Atlanta. With the acquisition announced Tuesday for an undisclosed sum, the Amazon and Google partner aims to extend that U.S. practice headquartered in New York City, while adding expertise around data, analytics, and machine learning, Tom Ray, head of Cloudreach USA, told CRN.

Leaders of Cloudreach and Relus, both premier AWS consulting partners, had been talking since May about the potential of uniting the companies, Ray said.

[Related: Three Is Better Than Two: Reliam Merges With Second AWS MSP In Big Bet On AWS]

Relus, founded in 2013, is a data and analytics specialist that was among the first partners to earn the AWS machine learning certification. While Cloudreach also has a data practice, it wasn't to the same level of skill and pedigree, Ray said.

Cloudreach, majority owned by the Blackstone Group, is seeing increasing demand from large enterprises for end-to-end services spanning their entire organizations, including advanced data and application modernization services.

"Enterprises are embarking on much larger projects now," Ray told CRN. "They're more all-in, looking for cloud-native partners with more scale and more capabilities," Ray said.

As the two companies explored a potential unification, they saw the cultures were a synergistic fit, Ray said. Cloudreach was also attracted to "the commercial capabilities" Relus had built up in its sales and marketing organization.

In August of last year, Cloudreach bought a smaller solution provider, Reston, Va.-based Emerging Technology Advisors, that formed the backbone of its application modernization practice.

With Relus, which had a headcount around 125, the company will employ more than 700 people.

While both solution providers have established themselves in the AWS ecosystem, Cloudreach has also built a Google Cloud practice and recently started working with Chinese cloud provider Alibaba.

Relus founder Mark Metz has established a pattern of scaling and selling channel consultancies. He ran three other solution providers that all grew beyond $100 million in sales before they were acquired by larger companies.

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