Continuing its expansion via the inorganic route into the Middle East, IT hardware manufacturer and systems integrator HCL Infosystems has acquired 20% equity stake in a Dubai-based Techmart Telecom Distribution FZCO, a Dubai-based distribution  partner of Nokia Corporation, through its Singapore-based subsidiary HCL Investments Pte Ltd.

In July, the company acquired 60% stake in the Dubai-based IT services and solutions provider NTS Group, for an estimated $6.5 million. The acquisition helped it expand into the Middle East and African markets.

Techmart Telecom has been the Nokia distributor of its smartphone range for the Middle East and Africa regions since 2002 and currently covers 14 countries in the region, servicing 7000 retail outlets. With this acquisition, HCL and Techmart with jointly build the distribution business in these markets. "We have taken another step in further expanding into emerging markets of Middle East and Africa. This move would strengthen our footprint in the Middle-East and African   countries," said Harsh Chitae, CEO, HCL Infosystems.

Nokia MEA's VP-Sales Chris Braam said, “HCL Infosystems is a key partner of Nokia globally and we look forward to work with them, in association with Techmart Telecom,  in expanding our smartphone business in Middle East and Africa”

The agreement provides an option to HCL to acquire up to 51% of equity stake in Techmart Telecom Distribution FZCO. The deal will also translate into HCL Infosystems becoming the consultancy and operational service provider for Techmart Telecom.

M P Sharma, President,  Techmart Telecom said, “We look forward to work closely with HCL Infosystems in growing the Nokia smartphones business in the region."

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