Verrus announces its acquisition by PayPoint plc
Verrus UK, and Verrus Mobile Technologies Inc., the owner of Verrus’ worldwide platform, are pleased to announce that they have been acquired by PayPoint plc, the UK’s leading cash and internet payments company. PayPoint is a listed FTSE 250 company and handles over £9.3 billion of payments from almost 550 million transactions annually for more than 6,000 clients and merchants.Existing management will continue to run the business. Robin Bevan, the founder of Verrus UK in Europe in 2004, will oversee the commercial side of the overall business, and Des Griffin, the co-founder of Verrus Inc. in 2000, will oversee the technical and financial sides of the overall business.
Robin Bevan, CEO of Verrus UK, said:
“We are delighted to announce this corporate transaction. We have wanted to bring Verrus UK and Verrus Inc. together for some time, and to bring on board a strategic partner to help us grow the business both in the UK and internationally. The acquisition by PayPoint allows us to do both of these. PayPoint will bring enormous strategic value to Verrus – allowing us to enhance the PayByPhone service by, for example, introducing cash payment options alongside credit/ debit card payment, and allow us to develop a broader range of payment services for existing and new clients. It will also allow us to invest more heavily in product development and the core platform underpinning the service. All of us at Verrus are very excited at the opportunities that this transaction will bring.”
David Newlands, Chairman of PayPoint plc, said:
“Verrus is an important acquisition for PayPoint and a key development in our strategy of broadening our payment services capabilities. Strong demand for PayByPhone, interesting cross over opportunities with our existing client base for a new payment channel and opportunities to extend the Verrus application to other services make Verrus a powerful addition to PayPoint’s payment service offering. We are delighted to welcome Verrus’ employees to PayPoint.”
In making the acquisition, PayPoint will benefit from:
- substantial growth in the market for PayByPhone parking;
- extension of the PayByPhone service into other applications; and
- synergies from broadening PayPoint’s service offering:
- potential for international expansion in multi-channel payment services off the back of Verrus presence;
- internet business offering to parking authorities for the credit/debit settlement from consumers; and
- enhancing the PayByPhone service by offering cash payment and/or loading of prepaid cards as additional payment channel.
The Verrus PayByPhone service is live in over 100 towns and cities across the UK, including five London boroughs, and the cities of York, Birmingham, and Newcastle. Internationally, the Verrus PayByPhone service is live in Vancouver, Miami, Washington D.C., Boston, San Francisco Bay Area, Sydney and Paris. In addition to dealing with public authorities, it also has contracts or trials with a number of private parking operators in Europe and North America such as Vinci, Standard, Impark, and NCP. The largest contract is with the City of Westminster, where Verrus is the main provider for on street parking payment. Since introduction in Westminster, parking revenues have increased by 45% and costs have reduced by over 20%, driven by significant reductions in theft, elimination of lost revenue from out of order meters, the ability to introduce more flexible charging and increased yields per space.
Commenting on this deal, Alastair Gilchrist, Strategic Director for Resources, City of Westminster, said:
“We have worked with Verrus to bring the very substantial benefits of PayByPhone to Westminster, to provide consumers with a convenient service, with improvements to the local environment through the removal of meters, and improvements in parking enforcement. Verrus has been responsive to requests for changes to make the service more user-friendly and more efficient. We believe the acquisition by PayPoint, with its financial strength, reputation for technology development and service propositions, will quickly lead to further benefits for the users of our service.”Evolution Capital Advisors and Cormorant Corporate Finance LLP served as financial advisors to Verrus on the transaction.
About PayPoint plc
PayPoint is the leading cash and internet payments company in the UK, with operations also in Ireland and Romania. It handles over £9.3 billion from almost 550 million transactions annually for more than 6,000 clients and merchants. Thecompany operates several businesses:
- The PayPoint branded retail network numbers over 22,300 terminals located in local shops (including Co-op, Spar, McColls, Costcutter, Sainsbury’s Local, One Stop, Londis and thousands of independents) in all parts of the UK and Ireland. The terminals process gas and electricity meter prepayments, cash bill payments, mobile phone top-ups, transport tickets, BBC TV licences and a wide variety of other payment types for most leading utilities, telecommunications suppliers and many consumer service companies;
- An ATM network which has over 2,300 ‘LINK’ branded machines across the UK, typically in convenience stores;
- PayPoint.net, an internet payment service provider, delivers secure online credit and debit card payments for over 5,200 web merchants, linking into all major UK acquiring banks;
- PayPoint Romania, a branded national retail network of over 2,400 terminals located in local shops which process cash bill payments for all the major utilities and mobile top-ups and a further 2,600 terminals that process mobile top-ups only; and
- Collect+, a joint venture with Home Delivery Network Limited, provides a parcel collection and drop off service at PayPoint retailers.
PayPoint floated on the London Stock Exchange in September 2004 and the company’s market capitalisation at March 3rd 2010 was £257 million. PayPoint is widely recognised for its leadership in prepayment systems, smart technology and consumer service.