Vantiv, Mercury CEOs Discuss Growth Post-Acquisition

Vantiv’s recently announced plans to acquire Mercury Payment Systems rounds out its strategic roadmap with an integrated business solutions platform serving small and midsize businesses. As CEOs Charles Drucker (Vantiv) and Matt Taylor (Mercury) told Market Platform Dynamics CEO Karen Webster in a recent podcast interview, cross-selling will be an important part of their initial growth strategy, with EMV and tokenization playing key roles.


Vantiv’s recently announced planned acquisition of Mercury Payment Systems for $1.65 billion is another checkbox on the strategic solutions provider’s strategic roadmap, according to Charles Drucker, Vantiv’s president and CEO.

That roadmap called for the expansion of its eCommerce capabilities, which was addressed when Vantiv acquired Litle in 2012 for about $361 million. The other piece was integrated payment, and that’s where the Mercury Payment Systems acquisition fills a particularly strategic area of focus, Drucker said in a recent podcast interview with Market Platform Dynamic CEO Karen Webster.

(Jump to: 6:15)“We are focused with this acquisition on growth and how to take advantage of going to market,” he said, noting less than 10 percent of Litle’s installed client base is using Mercury’s services today. “We think we can focus that and get exciting cross-sell into those particular clients."

Vantiv also has strong capabilities in tokenization and end-to-end encryption, and entities will be helping their clients with EMV point-of-sale upgrades. (Jump to 3:45) “We can bring that forward very quickly to the Mercury family,” Drucker said.

Indeed, Vantiv brings scale and operational and cost efficiencies that will enable Mercury to compete more effectively, Matt Taylor, Mercury’s CEO, said during the same interview.

(Jump to: 5:16) “Their experience in running and operating one of the largest processing platforms in the business will enable us to get to market faster by leveraging that experience,” he said.

Both company leaders saw parity in their visions of the future for the payments industry, and their plans now are centered on bringing their combined services together as they look to grow and develop new products and services.

(Jump to 1:30) “Mercury’s business is really 100 percent focused on the integrated point-of-sale channel, and that won’t change as we merge the companies,” Taylor said. “What we will be talking about as the companies come together is what kinds of products and services that, as a combined entity, we can bring to the (dealer) channels."

Vantiv, a processing spin-off of Fifth Third Bancorp, is acquiring Mercury from Silver Lake, a global leader in technology investing. Mercury has a network of more than 3,000 point-of-sale software developers and dealers that serve small and midsize businesses across the U.S. and Canada. In 2013, Mercury generated net revenue of $237 million, growing by 17% year over year.

Mercury likes to talk about how it differentiates itself from others in the market because of its focus on the software-dealer channels. When the two CEOs initially got together, Drucker said he saw Mercury had a great system in working with developers and dealers, with integrated payments being a key part of that.

“On this particular timing, the stars aligned for us,” he said.


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