Worldline joins forces with Equens and buys competitor PaySquare

Worldline and Equens, both amongst the largest payment processors in Europe announced that they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding aiming to create the new pan-European leader in payment services.  

Worldline and Equens consider this step as a major milestone in the consolidation of the European payments market. The strategic aim of the new entity is to be one of the leading and most innovative payment service providers for financial institutions and corporates in Europe.

Memorandum of Understanding 

Under the terms of the agreement, the transaction is made of two components:

  • In Commercial Acquiring: projected acquisition of 100 % of PaySquare by Worldline in cash 

Worldline has agreed with Equens to acquire 100% of its commercial acquiring subsidiary PaySquare. The PaySquare business will be directly integrated in Worldline Merchant Services & Terminals Global Business Line.

  • In Financial Processing: creation of Equens Worldline Company

The agreement aims at the creation of a new entity branded Equens Worldline Company, owned by Worldline at 63.6%.

The largest pan-European financial processor

The Equens Worldline Company will become the largest pan-European financial processor, targeting 2016 revenue of € 700 million, managing approximately 100 million payment cards, processing 10 billion transactions, 6 billion ATM and POS transactions and employing 3,000 experts in payments.

Worldline will receive 63.6% of newly created Equens shares in exchange of the merger of its current Financial and Acquiring processing activities in Germany, France and Benelux with the corresponding Equens processing activities. The current Equens shareholders, ABN AMRO Bank, DZ BANK, ICBPI, ING Bank and Rabobank will stay as shareholders and own the remaining 36.4%.

The Equens Worldline Company will benefit from the combination of the two highly experienced international management teams from Equens and Worldline FPL Global Service Line, thus ensuring a strong execution of the commonly established industrial and synergy plan. Mr. Michael Steinbach, current CEO of Equens, will be appointed as CEO of the Equens Worldline Company.

In Commercial Acquiring, the Group will benefit from PaySquare's strong positions in merchant services in the Benelux and in cross-border acquiring (The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Poland), resulting in more integrated and comprehensive omni-channel offers.

2nd Quarter 2016

The transaction is expected to close during the second quarter of 2016, after the projected reorganization of the contributed businesses, and is subject to work councils' information and consultation processes in Worldline and Equens, as well as regulatory and antitrust authorities' approvals.

Gilles Grapinet, CEO of Worldline says: "This industrial transaction with Equens is a decisive step reflecting our strategic ambition to be one of the leading consolidators of payments in Europe. It will provide an opportunity to join forces with highly experienced payment experts from Equens and to share, within our enlarged Group, a common future."

Michael Steinbach, Equens' CEO adds: "Joining forces with Worldline and creating the new entity, the Equens Worldline Company, is a major milestone in consolidating the European payments market. This step follows consequently the proven strategy of Equens since our foundation in 2006, with a truly pan-European processing payment service provider, to maximize economies of scale and scope, and with that actively supporting the development of an integrated European payments market."

Continue here to read the full press release by Worldline and Equens.


About Worldline 

Worldline is the European leader in the payments and transactional services industry. Worldline delivers new-generation services, enabling its customers to offer smooth and innovative solutions to the end consumer. Key actor for B2B2C industries, with over 40 years of experience, Worldline supports and contributes to the success of all businesses and administrative services in a perpetually evolving market.
Worldline activities are organized around three axes: Merchant Services & Terminals, Mobility & e-Transactional Services, Financial Processing & Software Licensing. Worldline employs more than 7,300 people worldwide and generated 1.15 billion euros revenues in 2014. Worldline is an Atos company.

About Equens 

Equens SE is one of the largest payment providers in Europe, processing 9.7 billion payments and 5 billion POS and ATM transactions each year. Their core business consists of connecting payers and payees by offering services that enable them to make and receive payments in a seamless, secure and efficient manner. Building on more than 50 years of experience in the payments industry, they offer modular, customisable and future-proof solutions covering the entire payments value chain. Besides traditional payments, their platforms are also geared for e-payments, m-payments, e-mandates and e-identity transactions. With offices in five countries, they service a broad, international client base in numerous countries across Europe. For additional information on Equens, please visit


Article sourced from Press Release by Equens SE and Worldline, November 3rd, 2015

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