Best Buy To Acquire Cloud Provider mindSHIFT

Nearly a decade after it acquired Geek Squad, consumer tech retailer Best Buy has agreed to buy IT outsourcer and cloud provider mindSHIFT Technologies for $167 million.

While Geek Squad gave Best Buy an entrée into providing IT services for consumers and small businesses, the acquisition of mindSHIFT lets Best Buy step it up in a big way to serve small and medium businesses with enterprise-oriented IT requirements. Among verticals it targets are health care, financial services, nonprofits and education.

mindSHIFT offers managed services, hosting and professional services including application development, SharePoint solutions and consulting. The company also recently launched a new portfolio of cloud services called CloudShift, which include a variety of applications such as Exchange, SharePoint and Dynamics CRM services, desktop cloud services, server-hosted offerings based on VMware's vCloud platform and voice over IP services.

"There's no question that acquiring the skills, capabilities and clients of mindSHIFT has the potential to help expand Best Buy's global services capabilities in the vast small and mid-sized business market," said George Sherman, senior vice president of Best Buy Services, in a statement.  "As important, the mindSHIFT team will bring added experience, talent and resources to the remote support capability we have been building within our multi-channel tech service unit Geek Squad."

Best Buy said mindSHIFT has 5,400 customers and 500 employees. Like Geek Squad, mindSHIFT will maintain its own brand and management team, Best Buy said. The acquisition is scheduled to close by year's end.

About the Author

Jeffrey Schwartz is editor of Redmond magazine and also covers cloud computing for Virtualization Review's Cloud Report. In addition, he writes the Channeling the Cloud column for Redmond Channel Partner. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreySchwartz.