Manchester-based managed IT services company GCI has announced its fifth acquisition in a year.

GCI has acquired Hertfordshire-based Unified Communications Specialist Freedom Communications for an undisclosed sum.

It follows the acquisition of high-profile cloud specialist Outsourcery six months ago.

CEO Adrian Thirkill said: “2016 was a busy and productive year at GCI.

“It was about setting the framework for growth and preparing GCI to catch the moment as next generation managed IT services transition from adolescence to mainstream business transformers.

“Our acquisition of Freedom is another steady step in our journey to deliver progressive and cost-efficient managed services to all our customers.

“Freedom Communications adds another 40,000+ Skype for Business seats to our Microsoft UCaaS arm taking GCI to more than 180,000 Skype for Business seats overall.

“This quietly elevates GCI to the top tier of UK service providers capable of delivering and supporting Microsoft Skype and Cloud PBX at scale – and across multiple sectors.”

Pat Botting, MD at Freedom Communications, commented: “Not only is this great news for our people, but it is also great news for all our customers now gearing to full Unified Communications adoption. Exciting times ahead.” 

GCI has offices across the UK and operates its own network ring, data centres, application platforms and 24/7 support operation.

Last year GCI secured a £50m acquisition growth fund to support its strategic objectives.