Saturday , January 19, 2019

Eye on M&A: Elavon Buys Electronic Transaction Systems; FIS Sells Certegy Check Services

Merchant acquirer Elavon Inc. has acquired Electronic Transactions Systems Corp., an independent sales organization and business-software provider, Elavon parent company U.S. Bancorp announced Tuesday. Another payment processor, Fidelity National Information Services Inc. (FIS), also reported Tuesday that it sold the assets of its Certegy Check Services unit to a private-equity firm.

U.S. Bancorp is one of two sponsor banks for ETS, the other being Merrick Bank, according to ETS’s Web site. Ashburn, Va.-based ETS brings to Elavon an undisclosed number of merchants for which it provides payment processing, bill payments, gift cards, e-commerce services, mobile transit and parking payments, and other services. The acquisition will enhance Elavon’s e-commerce offerings, enable the processor to integrate payment processing into ETS’s  software, and give merchants a way to easily access Elavon’s services, U.S. Bancorp said.

“ETS has an innovative approach to merchant payments that fits well within Elavon’s strategy to provide businesses the ability to safely and quickly integrate into our system,” Jamie Walker, chief executive of Atlanta-based Elavon, said in a news release. “ETS is a successful, dynamic company, and we look forward to growing our business together.”

The deal also expands the international reach of Elavon, which already has a substantial presence in parts of Europe. ETS says it serves merchants in 23 countries in North America and Europe.

“We are thrilled to join with Elavon and become part of U.S. Bank,” Ed Vaughan, CEO of ETS, said in the release. “We have worked with U.S. Bank for the 20 years that we’ve been growing our company.”

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In a divestiture, meanwhile, FIS said in a brief announcement that it “has sold substantially all of the assets” of Certegy Check Services to an affiliate of Los Angeles-based Variant Equity Advisors LLC. The company, which provides check-authorization and cashing services, formerly was part of the check and payment-processing unit of credit-reporting agency Equifax Inc., which spun Certegy off as a public company in 2001. In 2005, the parent company of FIS at the time acquired Certegy.

“The divestiture is consistent with FIS’ strategic focus on providing software-based solutions to its financial-institution, corporate, and other clients,” Jacksonville, Fla.-based FIS said in the release, which did not list terms. The deal closed Aug. 31.

Another portfolio company of Variant is Curb Mobility, which offers a mobile-payment platform and related services for taxis and other for-hire transportation providers.

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