Belgium’s RealDolmen seeks buys, big or small

By Ben Deighton

BRUSSELS (BestGrowthStock) – Big may be beautiful but good things may also come in small packages for RealDolmen (REAL.BR: ) as the acquisitive Belgian company casts around for the deal it needs to fuel its growth strategy.

“We have talks with smaller companies, we have also talks with bigger companies,” Chief Executive Bruno Segers told Reuters in an interview.

Dutch peer Qurius (QRIUS.AS: ) saw its shares rise by as much as 14 percent on Tuesday after Segers told Reuters in an interview it was one of the companies that he was in talks with over a possible tie-up.

With a market capitalization of about 34 million euros ($45.1 million) and a core profit of just over 5 million euros in 2009, Qurius would be a relatively big acquisition for RealDolmen, which had 47 million euros in cash at the end of its first half year.

Similarly Ordina (ORDN.AS: ), the Dutch computer services company that Segers also named, would be quite a mouthful with a market capitalization of just over 160 million euros and a 2009 recurring core profit of over 32 million euros.

“They’re looking at acquisitions either to complement their portfolio of offerings or to expand or improve their regional reach,” said analyst Nico Melsens at KBC Securities.

Segers said he has around 20 companies in Belgium, the Netherlands and France on his radar screen.

“That shouldn’t be per se a big company, it might be a small consulting team of 20 people that really have focused on a certain niche,” said analyst Siddy Jobe at Bank Degroof.

He added, however, that Qurius was complimentary to RealDolmen, and that, for Ordina, Segers could have meant the Belgian division.

In its Belgium and Luxembourg region, Ordina made a recurring core profit of 2 million euros.

RealDolmen needs to make an acquisition to help turbo-charge its ambitious growth strategy.

“We believe over time we can become the outsourcer of the global midmarket in a parameter of 300 kilometers around Brussels, we have that ambition,” 52-year-old Segers, a former head of Microsoft (MSFT.O: ) in Belgium, said.

RealDolmen, formed in a 2008 merger between Real, a software company, and Dolmen, former IT department of supermarket group Colruyt (COLR.BR: ), is well placed to put its money where its mouth is.

“In 2012 they will become net cash so … they have the freedom to do that,” said Jobe.

(Editing by David Holmes)

($1=.7540 euro)

Belgium’s RealDolmen seeks buys, big or small