The Panoply acquires Newcastle HealthTech consultancy for £8.8m

Posted on September 8, 2020 by Alistair Hardaker

Rachel Murphy

Rachel Murphy

Newcastle-upon-Tyne-based Difrent, a digital transformation firm focussed on the healthcare sector, has been acquired by technology services group The Panoply.

Approximately 75% of Difrent’s revenues are currently generated from the health and social care sectors, with clients including NHSX, Department of Health and Social Care, NHS Business Services Authority, Public Health England, World Health Organisation, DEFRA and Department of Work and Pensions.

The company’s proposition includes strategic consultancy, user centered design, business analysis, business change, procurement, and front and back end development.

The Panoply said the acquisition is profitable and “immediately earnings enhancing”.

Upon completion of the acquisition, Difrent will work with the group’s existing companies during the earn-out period with the potential of joining one of its full-stack brands in the future. 

The deal is worth a total initial consideration of £8.8m, with £4m in cash and £4.8m in shares. The cash element to be withheld pending the determination of completion accounts. 

Neal Gandhi, Chief Executive Officer of The Panoply, said: This acquisition is immediately earnings-enhancing for the Group, and clear evidence of our continued momentum against our three-year commercial vision, following on from the acquisitions of Arthurly in June 2020 and Ameo in the last financial year.

“As a disruptive, purposeful and forward-thinking company, the Difrent acquisition perfectly complements our strategy of acquiring best-in-class in companies who share the values and deep sense of purpose that runs through the Group.”

Rachel Murphy, CEO of Difrent, said in a blog that over the last 12 months, the firm has had three different companies approach it about a potential buy-out.

In a statement she added: All of the team here at Difrent greatly look forward to collaborating with The Panoply’s other Group businesses to win new business and, ultimately, deliver digital transformation programmes of the highest quality to our clients and by definition create better services for citizens, patients and service users.”

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