SIX, which operates the infrastructure underpinning the Swiss financial sector, is acquiring PayLife GmbH, the Austrian market leader in the field of cashless payment, from a group of Austrian banks. In this way, SIX is underscoring its intention to push its international growth and become one of Europe’s leading providers for card-based payment services. The sale of PayLife to SIX was approved by the Austrian Cartel Court and completed yesterday. The parties agreed not to disclose the acquisition price.
The sale of PayLife to SIX by Austrian banks including Bank Austria, BAWAG, Erste Bank, Raiffeisen and ÖVAG was completed and formally effected yesterday, marking the end of a sale process that has lasted around 18 months. One hundred percent of the shares in PayLife Bank GmbH were transferred, as a result of which PayLife was acquired by SIX with retroactive effect from 1 January 2013.
As a wholly owned subsidiary of SIX, PayLife is to be incorporated into the company’s Payment Services Division during the next few months. PayLife’s new management team comprises:
- Roger Niederer, CEO, previously Head Operations at SIX Payment Services AG
- Peter Neubauer, Managing Director, previously CEO PayLife Bank GmbH
- Mirko Thomas Oberholzer, Managing Director, previously Head Legal Unregulated Divisions at SIX Management AG
The newly appointed Supervisory Board consists of:
- Dr Thomas Schirmer, Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Binder Grösswang Rechtsanwälte
- Niklaus Santschi, Member of the Supervisory Board, CEO SIX Payment Services
- Dr Stefan Mäder, Member of the Supervisory Board, Group CFO SIX
- Emil Urs Büchler, Member of the Supervisory Board, COO SIX Payment Services
The acquisition allows SIX to put its collaboration with PayLife, which has been ongoing and steadily growing since 2004, on a new footing. As PayLife’s central processing partner, SIX already ensures that transactions between card holders, card issuers and traders are efficient and secure, thanks to its cutting-edge IT infrastructure. In future, PayLife clients will benefit directly from SIX’s international experience throughout Europe and from innovative solutions along the entire value chain for cashless payments.
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Both companies’ clients will benefit from greater competitiveness and enhanced presence in 33 European countries. The increased focus on industry solutions (retail, hospitality, self service and above all e-commerce) offers potential for organic growth, for SIX expects to generate strong growth with its expertise and all-in-one approach.
For the sell-side the transaction was supported by the investment bank departments of Bank Austria and the Erste Group.