Digital development and hosting company Ixis has acquired creative web development agency LiberoNet.

The LiberoNet team has relocated from Birchwood to Ixis’ nearby offices in the Base in Central Warrington while LiberoNet founder Dan Pala has joined the firm as part of the acquisition.

Ixis, which has almost trebled operating profits in the year since undergoing a management buyout, said the acquisition will support its expansion into a full open-source offering, moving away from a previous focus on Drupal.

LiberoNet was founded in 2010 and has grown by offering a range of eCommerce, UX creative and web development services.

“At LiberoNet we were ready to move into the next stage of growth,” said Pala. “This merger will allow us to benefit from Ixis’ strengths, including their knowledge base, ISO certifications and excellent support service.

“We will be able grow our own skills and widen the services we can offer to the clients we bring with us, as well as expanding the capabilities of Ixis.

“As a ShopWare partner we can bring our eCommerce expertise and offer something different in the marketplace. We can also offer website builds in WordPress and bespoke applications with Laravel, supporting greater flexibility and more choice for our combined clients.”

Mike Carter, MD of Ixis, with some of the LiberoNet team

Ixis has historically specialised in development, support and maintenance, and hosting services for websites using the Drupal content management system, but is now expanding its enterprise quality expertise to cover other open source platforms.

MD Mike Carter said: “LiberoNet and Ixis are a perfect fit. LiberoNet’s eCommerce, WordPress and UX expertise will complement Ixis allowing us to expand our service offering to a wider audience.

“Ultimately, Ixis prides itself on being a forward-thinking agency, committed to the best fit, safe, secure and proven technologies and harnessing them for our client’s benefit, and branching out on to other open source platforms is the natural evolution of that.

“We’re really excited about this next phase in the company’s development, and to have their talented people along for the ride.”