AVAD’s Gartland: DBL Acquisition “Good Move Forward” for Common Parent Ingram
The $96 million deal announced yesterday that will change DBL Distributing from an “Inc.” to an “LLC” under the Ingram Micro umbrella will make DBL a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ingram. But it will also make it a sister to a former competitor—AVAD, which was acquired by Ingram just over two years ago.
“Ingram Micro is the biggest and strongest in the IT space,” said DBL President and CEO David Lorsch. “When you put us and AVAD together with them, you’ve got a helluva triumvirate.”
AVAD, since its acquisition by Ingram Micro, “has certainly been a competitor” of DBL’s, said Lorsch, but he noted that the two are different enough that the strong points of each will complement the other’s. “We tend to emphasize delivery of boxes and they work well as a value-added distributor, in that they have more will-call locations,” said Lorsch. “We do a tremendous amount of business out of our will-call location in Scottsdale, [Ariz.], but the will-call location is just a derivative of the business because it’s here, whereas [AVAD has] walk-in locations in 37 cities. We have different efficiencies and different competencies within the same space.”
AVAD President Bob Gartland sees the Ingram-DBL deal as “a good move forward for Ingram’s strategy to become a really significant player in the consumer electronics business. It’s a good opportunity for them.” Gartland speculated that Ingram is “looking to use resources to build a business in consumer electronics, in major part through acquisition. [DBL] was a company with good share and a good customer base. It’s a financially sound decision for [Ingram] as well as adding to their overall portfolio.”
Like Lorsch, Gartland acknowledged a competitive relationship between DBL and AVAD but downplayed its significance going forward. “Certainly, we compete at some minor levels across the marketplace,” he said, “but we do very different things, and I don’t see any changes. In fact, I’m certain there will be no changes in what AVAD does. And Ingram plans to run DBL the way it’s running now, with the same management team, and probably just determine how they can enhance that company’s business, just like they’ve tried to help us enhance ours.”