Worldpay Attracts Interest of Rival in U.S. and Banking Behemoth
On Tuesday, British payments processor company Worldpay Group said it received two different preliminary approaches from Vantiv its rival in the U.S. and JPMorgan Chase over the possibility of a takeover. The news helped send shares higher.
The area of payments processing is much more fashionable of late as more payments continue to move online, on smartphones and other mobile devices, providing growth in many financial technology companies and acquisitions by the traditional payment processors.
If it were finalized, a deal involving Vantiv would expand the Cincinnati-based company’s geographic footprint. Vantiv provides technology and payment services to financial institutions and merchants in the U.S.
A deal with JPMorgan Chase would add to the processing power of the bank’s debit and credit card businesses.
The latest potential offers come following an increase in the number of deals across the sector the past few years.
Two years ago, Visa dished out €21.2 billion equal to approximately $24 billion at today’s exchange rates, when it acquired Visa Europe from payment services providers and banks that had formed an association.
That transaction was put in place with the intention of expanding the international reach of Visa and to allow the payment network the ability to compete better with MasterCard since it had integrated its operations in Europe.
Vantiv has made numerous acquisitions in the area of payments. In November of last year it acquired the U.S. arm of Canadian payment services provider Moneris Solutions Corp for $406.7 million.
This past April Vantiv acquired Paymetric, an electronic payment technology provider for an amount that was not disclosed.
The Tuesday announcement sent Worldpay shares up 12% in London during midmorning trading. The company has a worth of $9 billion, based upon Tuesday’s market capitalization.
Worldpay said another announcement would be released if appropriate and it said it made the disclosure without JPMorgan or Vantiv’s consent.
The statement was released following media speculation of a possible takeover bid taking place. Worldpay would not say what the potential value was for either of the two possible transactions.
Under takeover rules in Britain, JPMorgan and Vantiv now have until August 1 to submit a formal offer. No comment was released by JPMorgan, while Vantiv failed to respond to a request for a comment.
Worldpay, which is based in London, is the provider of payment processing for online, mobile as well as in-store transactions across 146 countries and is Britain’s largest payment processor, where it represents close to 42% of all payment transactions.
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