Number 13 might prove unlucky for some, but not QBS — which has been awarded 13th place on CRN UK‘s list of Top 40 Distributors You Need To Know.

Doug Woodburn, CRN research editor, said QBS Technology Group‘s 75 staff generated annual revenue of £109 million, which represented a leap of 42% year on year that guaranteed its position among the Top 40.

“Differentiating itself through its own platform, QBS’ recent conquests include Zedsphere and AlphaGen in the UK, as well as German Compuwave and French Seiner Informatique,” wrote Woodburn in a report on

“Group revenues for its year to 31 March 2021 hit £109m, up from £77m in 2020 and £64m in 2019 — with the bulk of sales still drawn from the UK.”

Dave Stevinson, group CEO at QBS, said that the company had added vendors in the past year, including recent additions of SolarWinds, SmartBear and Unitrends.

“But it would be terribly wrong to have favourites,” he said.

“As a scale-up company we will grow significantly again. We are totally dedicated to emerging software publishers. All our product is shipped electronically via our software delivery platform, so we will keep on developing the platform and adding functionality.”

Many people even in the industry believe that distribution simply adds cost. But this is a misconception, Stevinson pointed out. “In reality it adds value.”

Stevinson also noted that QBS has achieved its success despite the channel’s uneven performance as a whole in 2020-21 — with “contrasts” as well as consolidation in the market.

The value-add power of distribution

Large players are getting much larger, but the smart players are specialising — with some companies including QBS looking forward to continued growth.

“The role of distribution will not change significantly in the next decade — all changes will be incremental improvements,” Stevinson said.

“Our mission is to bring that business through the channel via our software delivery platform to optimise the software delivery process.”

Distributors on the new CRN leaderboard generated total revenues of almost £13 billion in recent years, according to the IT channel publication.

CRN’s Woodburn went on to cite key QBS specialisms including SaaS and other software, with brands including DocuSign, TeamViewer, SolarWinds, Sharegate and JetBrains.

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