According to unnamed sources with knowledge of the matter, according to Bloomberg, the bidding war for U.K. payments processor Worldpay has just seen the entry of its German rival as a potential buyer.
Also in the race is a joint proposal from equity firms Blackstone Group and Hellman & Friedman. Worldpay is currently owned by Advent International and Bain Capital.
Worldpay — to keep this story interesting — is also preparing for a possible IPO. A decision may be announced as early as next month, according to sources close to the situation. Recently, the London-based firm selected Barclays Plc Deputy Chairman Michael Rake as its next chairman. It has also reportedly been investigating debt refinancing in the run-up to a potential IPO.
[bctt tweet="The reported bidding war for #Worldpay just got more interesting: "]
Wirecard is already public, and as of press time, the firm had a $5.2 billion market value, or 4.5 billion euros. Founded in 1999, the firm specializes in online and mobile payments and has seen its profits increase tenfold over the last ten years. Its net income last year was 108 million euros ($123 million).
Its interest in Worldpay remains conjectural at this point, as representatives for Wirecard, Worldpay, Bain, Blackstone and Hellman & Friedman declined to comment, and Advent didn’t respond at all, according to Bloomberg..
Advent and Bain bought Worldpay from RBS in 2010 for 1.7 billion pounds (about $2.64 million today).