FIS, Global Payments Eyed Merger, But Talk Broke Down, Report Says

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Fidelity National Information Services (FIS) and Global Payments were in talks to merge in a $70 billion deal, but it didn’t end up happening, according to The Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

Officials quoted by WSJ said the fact that the talks happened at all means that a trend of consolidation is still ongoing. However, WSJ noted that deal making this year has been erratic.

Both companies make technology that helps to facilitate merchant payments and banking. The deal was reportedly in “advanced talks,” WSJ reported, and the companies were planning to announce a deal this week. However, talks broke down unexpectedly for a reason not revealed to WSJ.

Had the deal gone through, it would have been the biggest this year, outdoing multiple others that were valued at around $40 billion, according to WSJ. The CEOs of both companies, Gary Norcross of FIS and Jeffrey Sloan of Global Payments, are experienced at negotiations and hold sway in a field with fewer major influential figures every year.

In particular, Norcross has said he wants to continue to grow through acquisitions. FIS struck a $35 billion deal to buy Worldpay early in 2019, while Global Payments bought Total Systems Services, or TSYS, months after that, WSJ reported.

FIS’ revenues increased 13 percent to $3.19 billion in third quarter earnings reported in October, which was largely attributable to the acquisition of Worldpay. Norcross said the pandemic has influenced how businesses have to interact with customers, and that FIS’ technology is helping in the transition to a more digital economy.

The company’s merchant solutions side saw the benefits of the Worldpay acquisition, increasing revenues by 44 percent to $1.01 billion. The banking side saw an increase of 4 percent to $1.5 billion. eCommerce transactions increased 30 percent in the quarter, with a boost as FIS had begun processing those transactions at giant retailers like Walmart.

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