FIS is to pay EUR375 million to acquire Brussels-based payments technology vendor Clear2Pay.
Clear2Pay, which counts 40 of the world's top 50 banks among its client list, employs over 1200 staff in 23 offices worldwide. The company's flagship Open Payments Framework offers a suite of re-usable components through which banks can process multiple payments types via a centralised payments engine. The company also boasts a number of other desirable assets in the cards space and in testing.
Rumours of a Clear2Pay sale first surfaced in October last year, when Reuters reported that private equity firm Aquline was looking to dispose of its interests in the company. Founded in 2001, Clear2Pay raised EUR50 million in an investment round led by the New York private equity firm in 2009, from the sale of shares previously held by Belgian VC, GIMV. The transaction gave Aquiline joint control of the company with its management.
FIS says the addition of Clear2Pay will bolster the company's position in the fast-growing payments segment, which has been identified as a key strategic growth and investment area. The US-based company reported $620 million in revenue and EBITDA of $264 million from payments-related sales in the first quarter.
Gary Norcross, president and chief operating officer of FIS, states: "Many institutions are struggling to adapt to the evolving global payments landscape, inclusive of high-value and cross-currency corporate payments and new channels. This strategic acquisition demonstrates our commitment to delivering the technologies and assets that will enable our clients, especially large and global institutions, to realise a truly modern payments environment that encompasses all customer channels, simplifies payment operations, reduces costs and provides a better customer experience."
FIS expects the transaction to close during the fourth quarter.