UK revenue: £1.299bn (+23%)
UK headcount: 1,705
Having leapt into the UK in 2014 via its ‘slow motion’ acquisition of Kelway, the world’s largest IT solutions provider’s local turnover powered up by nearly a quarter in calendar 2022 to nudge £1.3bn.
Globally, CDW logged net sales of $23.7bn during the period, making it comfortably larger than US-based peers WWT ($17bn turnover), SHI ($14bn), Insight ($8.4bn).
2023 was a mixed year for the NASDAQ-listed giant, however, as reduced or delayed spending among some customer segments and in some geographies (including the UK and Canada), dented the top line. Net sales were down 11% to $16.4bn in the first nine months of the year.
The UK business is “intentionally built to not have one singular sweet spot”, UK MD J.D Hupp tells us (see below).
Oxygen ice-breaker: A group of CDW co-workers rang the opening bell at the NASDAQ in October 2023 to mark the tenth-year anniversary of its IPO.
Q&A with CDW Managing Director, UK and International, J.D Hupp (pictured top)
Looking at CDW’s UK business, what’s been the high point of 2023?
It’s virtually impossible for me to pick a single high point for the year. If I had to, I’d say our biggest accomplishment is the way all 1,700+ co-workers rallied to do everything to serve our customers in an extremely difficult UK and global economy. You’ve heard me say it before, but I can’t say it enough; our people truly are our superpower.
What are your key investment priorities moving into 2024?
I probably sound like a broken record here but the strategy we set in 2020 still holds today. We will continue to invest in our people. We will continue to invest in security, hybrid platforms, digital enablement and modern workspace. These are all things that every current or future customer requires for their business and we want to drive value in those areas regardless of where customers are on that journey.
What do you regard as CDW UK’s sweet spot versus the other large IT solutions providers?
Our business is intentionally built to not have one singular sweet spot. We have leading capabilities across healthcare, retail, public, corporate, enterprise all supported by a suite of the best technical, operational and finance minds in the business. All of them ready to get out of the gates strong in 2024.
Name an industry trend not enough people are talking about…
I have to say AI. It is going to change how we live, work, commute, communicate, travel and more. No matter how much is already being said, it feels like it cannot be talked about enough. The possibilities are endless.