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Global: Chinese giant buys US firm MoneyGram

 |  January 26, 2017

Money transfer service MoneyGram is being bought by a financial services giant based in China.

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Ant Financial, which was spinoff from Alibaba before its IPO in 2014, is paying $13.25 a share for MoneyGram, 12% above the stock’s closing price on Wednesday. 

The acquisition is a drop in the bucket for Ant Financial, which has a $60 billion valuation and raised $4.5 billion just last year. The company has been active in the acquisitions space, buying EyeVerify, a US-based mobile eye recognition software firm, and it has invested in Yum Brands’  China operations.

The deal could be one of the first tests of how serious President Donald Trump is about cracking down on money transfers, also known as remittances, to Mexico.

Trump has already proposed building a physical wall on the border with Mexico. Trump has previously said he would consider levying big taxes — or even halting — remittances to Mexico if the country would not pay for the wall.

On Thursday, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto canceled a previously scheduled meeting with Trump after the rhetoric on who is going to pay for the wall ratcheted up.

MoneyGram already has a thriving remittances business. And last October — just a few weeks before the election — MoneyGram announced a deal with Walmart that would let customers send money from Walmart’s US stores to Walmart Mexico locations.

Full Content: GANT News

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