Optimal Payments completes acquisition of Skrill

Optimal Payments Plc (LON:OPAY) today announced the completion of its $1.2 billion acquisition of online payments expert Skrill. The announcement comes on the heels of the group receiving a regulatory nod of approval from the Financial Conduct Authority.

In today’s announcement, the directors of Optimal Payments stressed their support for the acquisition and reiterated their stance that the acquisition will be transformational and value enhancing for Optimal Payments and its shareholders.

Below are the highlights regarding the rationale for the Acquisition:

  •  Optimal Payments, together with Skrill, (the “Enlarged Group”) will have significantly enhanced scale across the world, with market leadership in the fast growing and profitable stored value and payment processing sectors. The Enlarged Group will now be able to accept and process over 100 payment types in over 22 languages and in over 40 currencies.
  • The Enlarged Group will have an increased customer and geographic diversification, and will be well positioned to capitalise on the expected growth in the North American regulated online gambling market.
  • The Optimal Payments and Skrill businesses are highly complementary, with a clear strategic fit and the Enlarged Group is well positioned as a leading provider of straight-through processing payment gateway services.
  • The Acquisition is expected to be accretive to adjusted earnings per share from the first full financial year following Completion. On-going cost saving synergies of approximately $40 million per annum are targeted to be achieved by the end of the financial year ending 31 December 2016. Additionally, Optimal Payments believes there will be further value upside potential from revenue cross-selling opportunities and platform consolidation.
  • The Enlarged Group will continue to have strong leadership, augmented by senior executives from the Skrill Group.

Optimal Payments has applied for the immediate re-admission of the Pre-Completion Existing Ordinary Shares and the admission of the Skrill Consideration Shares to trading on AIM. The number of ordinary shares to be admitted is 474,731,482, including 37,493,053 new Ordinary Shares to be issued to Sentinel Group Holdings S.A.

Dennis Jones, Chairman of Optimal Payments, said:

“The Board is confident that the transaction will deliver the earnings accretive benefits for shareholders from next year and that the intended move into the FTSE 250 will deliver enhanced liquidity. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Optimal Payments leadership team and their staff for their commitment and dedication to turning the acquisition of Skrill from an aspiration into a reality.”

Joel Leonoff, President and Chief Executive Officer of Optimal Payments, said:

“Today is a very important milestone for Optimal Payments. I am delighted we have successfully completed the acquisition of Skrill. This is a transformational deal which more than doubles the size of our business. Together, we are a stronger, more diversified business which is better able to compete on a global basis.

To view the official filing with the London Stock Exchange on the acquisition completion, click here.

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