UK payment technology firm Paysafe receives multi-billion takeover offer


Two private equity companies have launched a multi-billion pound bid for the UK’s Paysafe Group, underscoring just how fierce the demand from investors, banks and credit card companies is to capitalise on the burgeoning industry for financial technology.

Paysafe on Friday announced that it had received a nearly £2.9bn bid from a consortium of funds managed by private equity groups Blackstone and CVC Capital Partners.

The all-cash offer, of 590 pence per share, represents a premium of about 9 per cent over Paysafe’s closing share price on Thursday.

Consumers are increasingly ditching cash and companies facilitating alternative payment technologies have sparked the appetite of major financial firms and asset managers, eager to secure a foothold in the rapidly evolving market.

Earlier this month Worldpay, Britain’s largest payments processor, announced that it had accepted a £7.7bn takeover offer from US credit card provider Vantiv. Danish payment services firm Nets has also recently revealed that it has been approached by potential suitors.

Paysafe said that the offer was preliminary and conditional at this point, but it also said that Old Mutual Global Investors, its biggest shareholder with a stake of about 10.3 percent, had signed a non-binding letter of support for the possible offer.

Separately on Friday, Paysafe also announced that it had agreed to buy US peer Merchants Choice Payments Solutions for $470m.

Paysafe dates back to 1996 and is listed on the FTSE 250 index.