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IoT Game-Changer: Avnet To Acquire Softweb To Boost AI Capabilities

Avnet calls its planned acquisition of Softweb Solutions a game-changer for its artificial intelligence and Internet of Things capabilities.

Avnet said Wednesday that it will acquire Softweb Solutions, a technology consulting firm that specializes in developing artificial intelligence and Internet of Things solutions.

The Phoenix-based company called the acquisition a game-changer, saying that Softweb's AI software for IoT, as well as its data services and digital process capabilities, will give Avnet the ability to design, develop and deploy projects faster. It will also give Avnet an enhanced ecosystem of software solutions, opening up new and recurring revenue opportunities that improve margins.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

[Related: Tech Data CEO Dutkowsky On Avnet Integration Status, Next-Gen Investments And Where Specialty Competitors Get 'Left Behind']

The acquisition news comes nearly two years after Avnet closed the sales of its Technology Solutions practice to Clearwater, Fla.-based distributor Tech Data for $9.65 billion. At the time, Avnet CEO Bill Amelio said that the company had doubled down on its electronic components and integrated and embedded solutions business.

That has translated into a bigger push into IoT, which has been supported by its acquisitions of hardware community Hackster.io and IoT consultancy Dragon Innovation, as well as its investment in IoT startup Hanhaa.

“Softweb’s formidable IoT and data platforms, plus their expertise in AI, data advisory and digital development services, will enable us to bring even greater value to our customers as a single partner resource while accelerating Avnet’s growth," Amelio said in a statement.

Softweb, which has roughly 500 employees across offices in Dallas, Chicago and India, has completed more than 1,400 projects for 600 clients, including Pepsi, Siemens, CA Technologies and Bosch.

The deal is expected to close by the end of the year. Once closed, Avnet said it expects the acquisition to add 5 cents to 10 cents to its earnings per share by 2021.

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