Worldline Gets FCA Greenlight to Expand in UK

Payments services firm Worldline has gotten approval to expand its presence in Great Britain.

The company announced Tuesday (Nov. 28) that it had gotten a payment institution authorization from the U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). 

“The licensing confirms Worldline’s ambitions to further reinforce its presence in the U.K. and enhance its offerings for both local and international merchants operating across the country,” the company said in a news release.

“After decades of servicing both U.K.-based companies and large international merchants’ U.K. operations with acquiring, acceptance and other complementary solutions, Worldline has seized the opportunity to further strengthen its position in the country.”

According to the release, Worldline plans to consolidate its merchant customer-related business “under one UK roof” and make a large investment in its offering for local customers, including enlarging its team of experts.

The company already had a temporary license, which is set to conclude later this year. This new approval, Worldline said, makes sure the company is compliant and can offer its customers business continuity.

“The new license also opens the door to domestic processing capabilities, catering to the evolving needs of the market,” the company said. “Worldline’s approach of complete in-house acquiring means that payment facilitation rests entirely within the organization, fostering transparency and reliability.”

The news comes days after thus-far unconfirmed reports that Worldline was the target of a takeover by a private equity firm. The company has told PYMNTS it does not comment on market speculation.

PYMNTS examined the landscape surrounding the rumor, pointing out that there’s a long history of acquisitions in that sector. 

“The continued transformation of payments is a long-run game, we note, that may stoke PE appetite to take these firms into the fold, help retool or refine operations, and do it all without worrying about the vagaries of stock market action,” that report said.

These acquisitions go beyond the borders of Europe. This summer saw reports that FIS sold its majority stake in Worldpay to private equity group GTCR for $18.5 billion. FIS has retained a 45% stake in Worldpay, allowing cross-selling efforts between the two companies.