Euronet sparks MoneyGram bidding war with Ant Financial

Euronet sparks MoneyGram bidding war with Ant Financial

Euronet Worlwide is testing the financial firepower and resolve of Alibaba's Ant Financial unit by outbidding the Chinese behemoth's $13.25 per share offer for US money transfer business MoneyGram International.

Euronet has made a proposal to acquire all shares outstanding of MoneyGram International for $15.20 in cash, valuing the company at more than $1 billion, in addition to the assumption of approximately $940 million of MoneyGram’s debt outstanding.

The proposal represents a premium of approximately 15% over the Ant Financial offer and a premium of 28% over the closing price of $11.88 for MoneyGram stock on the day that the Chinese firm made its bid.

The deal value is significantly lower than Euronet's last attempt to take over MoneyGram back in 2007, when it made an unsolicited $1.65 billion bid to acquire the firm.

Euronet says the tabled deal offers stockholders a clearer path to a faster closing, with no regulatory or oversight issues casting a cloud on the deal.

Since the acquisition of Ria in 2006 and La Nacional the following year, Euronet has grown its money transfer segment from just more than $200 million in pro forma revenue to over $800 million primarily through the use of independent agents for disbursement, complementing Moneygram's focus on large retailers and national post offices.

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