Monday, April 02, 2007

KKR Is in Talks to Acquire First Data

Wall Street Journal reports that KKR Is in Talks to Acquire First Data:
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. is in late-stage negotiations to purchase credit-card and payments processor First Data Corp. for more than $24 billion, people familiar with the matter said, marking the latest in a string of leveraged buyouts of established U.S. corporations.

KKR was hoping to make an official announcement over the next few days, these people said. The exact purchase price couldn't be learned yesterday, though two people described the price as a premium of at least 20% to First Data's market capitalization of about $20 billion. As in any large-scale negotiation, talks could falter at the last moment, ...

Quite interesting move.

KKR is especially known here in the Netherlands for its buy-up of retailer KBB Vendex. They've really reshuffled the internal deck. So the chains are now also accepting credit-cards for example. And major cash cow Hema is also going to be sold pretty soon. That does make one wonder where the KKR-deal with First Data would go.

Would KKR wish to divest all recent First Data acquiries:
- Gesellschaft für Zahlungssysteme mbH,
- Austrian Payment Systems Services, the national processor in Austria
- EuroProcessing International, a leading card processor in Central and Eastern Europe
- The card processing unit of FinecoBank in Italy
- Delta Singular Outsourcing Services, a leading payments processor in Greece
- TeleCash , Germany ’s premier network services provider or continue the strategic path?
- POLCard, largest Polish card issuer/acquirer.

or would they continue buying...?