Warsaw and New York, November 7th, 2013 – PKO Bank Polski and EVO Payments International, a leading payment service provider operating in the United States, Canada and Europe, have entered into an agreement to form a long-term strategic alliance in the payment processing and acquiring business. Under the proposed transaction, EVO Payments International will acquire a 66 percent interest in eService, PKO’s existing merchant acquiring business. In addition, the parties will establish a 20 year alliance under which the parties will continue to work together to grow further eService’s business within Europe. PKO will receive USD 113,5 million for its stake, plus an additional earn-out based on future performance. Once closed, the transaction will have a positive impact on the Bank's capital ratios. The deal is subject to regulatory approvals and is expected to be completed by the end of 2013.
At present eService, with over 35% of market share in terms of transaction count and volume, is the leading Polish merchant acquirer. The eService acceptance network consists of more than 80,000 POS terminals and represents the largest network of terminals supporting contactless payments in Poland. The company also performs a key role in the development of IKO, the most innovative mobile banking solution in Poland offered by PKO Bank Polski. In the first half of 2013 eService posted a net profit of PLN 19.3 million. According to The Nilson Report, eService ranks in the top 30 of the largest European merchant acquirers.
Acquisitions and alliances in Poland and Central Europe constitute one of the six strategic levers for PKO’s future development to gain a sustainable competitive advantage and increase its value for shareholders. As such, the alliance with EVO will allow eService to leverage EVO’s experience as a payment processing partner, while allowing both EVO and PKO to focus on introducing innovative products and services to eService's existing and future merchant customers.
Zbigniew Jagiełło, CEO of PKO Bank Polski, said, “With this strategic alliance we are executing our strategy for eService. The company has achieved a leading position in the Polish market, is highly profitable and well positioned to expand internationally. Now, with a prominent and one of the most dynamically developing payments service providers in the world, we can mutually focus on further developing eService as a leading merchant acquirer in Poland, while expanding throughout Central and Eastern Europe.”
James G. Kelly, CEO of EVO Payments International, said, “We are delighted to be partnering with PKO Bank Polski, a leading financial institution in the region, with an established historyand strong dedication to provide innovative solutions. This alliance fits perfectly with our strategy of expanding our global reach and strengthening our position in an important European market. We have been very impressed with the eService team and will continue to support the team in growing the market and the region by bringing our proven sales solutions to expand the market. We intend on making our existing products available to eService, while leveraging the remarkable eService infrastructure”.
PKO Bank Polski is the largest universal bank in Poland in terms of both scale of business activities and financial results. PKO holds a position of unquestionable leader in local retail banking industry and makes strong appearance on corporate market. It is the leading bank in Poland for corporate clients and small and medium-sized enterprises - especially in terms of financing their business. PKO provides funding for all industries of the Polish economy and is a leading lender to local governments. PKO Group provides a comprehensive range of financial products and services, including brokerage, pension funds, leasing products and investment funds. The Bank received numerous awards for quality of its service, social responsibility, corporate governance and the quality of annual reports. According to "The Banker" magazine, the PKO brand is worth $1.25 billion, making it the most valuable brand in the Polish banking sector. PKO is also a domestic company with the largest number of free float shares on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. Visit www.pkobp.pl for more information about the company and its services.
EVO Payments International, LLC is a leading payments service provider of merchant acquiring and processing solutions for merchants, Independent Sales Organizations (ISOs), financial institutions, government organizations, and multinational corporations located throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. A principal member of VISA and MasterCard, EVO offers an array of innovative, reliable and secure payments solutions, backed by an uncompromising commitment to exceed the needs of its customers and partners.