The biggest news at the recent AQUA trade show was not a product release, but one of two companies joining together.
Aquatic Now and ITC Aquatics have merged, releasing the following statement:
Norwich based aquatic tech company seneye ltd has merged with the well renowned distributor ITC.
The merger is a no-brainer for those that know the two businesses, as both have complimentary skill sets that will enable considerable growth in the market through the combination of their diverse and expanding product lines.
ITC has considerable experience in the distribution business where as seneye has extensive knowledge in product development and technology. Combined, the two companies will make up a strong team of aquarists and innovators committed to improving the aquatic industry.
seneye ltd is known for their 24/7 optical monitoring devices that protect all aquatic life, from a hobbyist’s tank to the world’s largest public aquariums. Leading on from the success of their own products they have naturally flowed into other areas of the industry and are now the UK distributor, Aquatic Now, for various international brands including, Fritz Aquatics (US), Easyreefs (Spain), Abyzz Pumps (Germany) via the distribution site Aquatic Now.com.
ITC Aquatics, founded by Charles Bessent, has flourished into a well-known successful specialist distributor for marine aquatics. As well as distributing, promoting and supporting world class brands such as Dr Timms (US), Real Reefs (US), Neptune Systems (US) and Rossmont (Italy) they also designed and produced their own products including the award winning ALR algae reactor.
Both directors are excited for the future and are convinced the merger will benefit each company as much as the aquatic industry in general. Seneye founder, Matthew Stevenson said:
‘Seneye is an ambitious young technology company that has established itself in the aquatic market as a key brand growing at around 30% per annum. Their network of customers extends into public aquarium as well as the domestic aquarium market worldwide. It’s this understanding of technology and customer reach that allows for a nice dovetail with established businesses looking for fresh growth.’
Furthermore, ITC founder, Charles Bessent commented:
‘the merger between the 2 companies bringing old and new together will create a fantastic company going forward. I can’t wait to bring all these great brands together under one roof and supply to all concerned to make the aquatics industry even better.’
Together these companies will present a new avenue in the aquatic industry, providing retailers, end consumers and commercial clients such as public aquariums and aquaculture with the highest quality products to maximise efficiency when it comes to looking after aquatic livestock.
What it means for the industry
Fishkeeping News asked an Aquatic Now spokesperson how it would affect existing customers of the two companies, and where goods would now be ordered and dispatched from:
Aquatic Now can be used to order but its primary use is an information base for people to discover and understand all products available via Aquatic Now.
In terms of existing relationships with customers, nothing will change. Customers will be able to talk to their usual seneye/Aquatic Now and ITC sales teams over phone or email to order as usual, as they always have done. Just with a bigger range to choose from!
Aquatic Now is meant to be a tool for convenience, so stores can order out of business hours and we expect this increasingly to be the adopted method of ordering.
Both sides will continue to operate from existing sites for the for-seeable future.
Distribution will be consolidated, and we are considering using ITC solely to store the distribution goods as the site is better equipped.
Aquatic Now has recruited Craig Timms as Aquatic Now’s Sales and Marketing Manager and will be responsible for sales activities for Aquatic Now’s brands moving forwards.
The good news
So Aquatic Now has added premium brands Apex and Real Reef to its product portfolio, and Fishkeeping News looks forward to any potential collaboration between Apex and Seneye, which seems a very natural fit.
It also means a stable, guaranteed future for ITC Aquatics, which went for a period without any sales people on the road, after EcoTech Marine and Nyos UK distribution left to join start-up distributor Xodis.
Aquatic Now has now become a serious contender in the aquatic tech distribution stakes, opening up availability of some premium brands to a whole load more retail customers, and the best part is noone saw it coming.
We’re sure that the merged companies will now attract a lot more customers together, and other distribution partnerships.