EDB Business Partner looks for growth in cards sector with TAG acquisition

EDB Business Partner looks for growth in cards sector with TAG acquisition

EDB Business Partner is to acquire the Norwegian card company TAG Systems, for Nkr250 million and assumption of Nkr50 million debt.

TAG, which currently employs 100 from its base in Mo i Rana, will continue as a separate company, as part of EDB's bank and finance unit.

TAG has reported strong growth over recent years with operating revenue expected to show a 20% increase in 2005 to Nkr114 million. The firm, which has long-term contracts with several leading Norwegian banks and has staked out a position in the rapidly growing smart card business, currently works on operating margins of 20%.

The acquisition will take place with effect from 15 January 2006 and EDB will finance the purchase from its existing credit facilities.

Endre Rangnes, CEO of EDB says of the deal: "Card and payment services represent a major area of focus for EDB, and we are positioning ourselves to take a larger share of this market."

TAG and EDB have been close collaborators since 2004. The Norwegian firm's products are included in EDB's range of card services that are currently used by seven offshore-based international banks, Reliance Bank and Handelsbanken's UK operation.

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