London-based SafeCharge has acquired 3V Transaction Services for €14.5 million. 3V will become the foundation of SafeCharge’s card issuing activities through its new Issuing Division.
Established in 2004, 3V is a leading technology provider which specializes in tools for the effective issuing, processing and management of pre-paid card programs. The company has developed proprietary systems that support both physical card programs and rapidly deployable mobile based open loop Virtual Cards, Gift Cards, and Virtual Vouchers for card not present transactions.
3V’s issuing technologies have been deployed in numerous countries, including Canada, Finland, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Spain and the UK. It has managed industry leading and highly successful pre-paid programs for customers such as Visa Europe and mobile network operators O2/Telefonica, Orange and DNA. These programs include a virtual ticketing solution built for the 2012 Olympics for Visa Europe, O2 Money in Ireland, Orange Cash in Spain and gift cards which can be found in leading UK supermarkets.
In addition to its issuing products, the company has developed proprietary acquiring systems and technologies to enable merchants to accept cash online in a rapid and cost effective manner. These acquiring technologies use well-established settlement systems via a network of 70,000 retail stores and partners. The company’s technologies are PCI Level 1 approved and it expects to be awarded Electronic Money Institution status by the Central Bank of Ireland in 2015.
The business is based in Dublin, Ireland and employs approximately 56 staff. For the financial year to 31 December 2013 3V, which has not historically capitalised its development expenses, generated revenues of €2.9 million and a net loss of €3.2 million with net assets of €2.6 million.
Rationale for Acquisition:
– 3V will be the foundation of SafeCharge’s new Issuing Services division. The acquisition will accelerate the Group’s entry into pre-paid card issuance, gift cards, vouchers and mobile payments and allow the Group to retain full control over the operations of this new business vertical
– Pre-paid cards are one of the fastest growing payment types in Europe, with market growth estimated at around 21% per annum
– 3V expands SafeCharge’s B2B product offering, adding a world-leading card issuance platform and alternate acquiring solutions. The company has strong reference accounts and a robust and live platform which is proven to be scalable with live projects in multiple countries around the world
– The Acquisition helps to expand the Group’s regulatory footprint
– 3V enables SafeCharge to leverage its Issuing status with MasterCard, digital wallet and the PAY.com brand
– The Acquisition enables cross-selling opportunities in multiple countries
The newly created Issuing Division is expected to be operationally profitable at an EBITDA level in its first year of operation.
SafeCharge International Group Limited is a global provider of payments services, risk management and IT solutions for online businesses. The SafeCharge group has a diversified, blue chip client base and is a trusted payment partner for customers from various e-Commerce verticals. SafeCharge has been Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (“PCI-DSS”) Level 1 certified since 2007 and is listed on the London Stock Exchange AIM market (LSE: SCH). The Company’s wholly owned subsidiary, SafeCharge Limited, is an authorized Electronic Money Institution regulated by the Central Bank of Cyprus (CBC), and a principal member of MasterCard Europe and Visa Europe. The SafeCharge group has operations in the UK, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Israel, Germany and Austria.
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