Verifone acquisition announced, shares surge


Shares of Verifone skyrocketed more than 50 percent in extended trading after a private equity firm-led investor group announced it would acquire the electronic payment company in a $3.4 billion deal.

Verifone’s stock has fallen about 70% from its peak in 2011. The company’s point-of-sale systems, including its widespread credit-card readers, have struggled in competition with lower-priced competitors, especially in emerging markets like Brazil.

In its last annual earnings report, for the fiscal year ended October 31, 2017, the company reported a net loss of $174 million, up sharply from the previous year’s net loss of only $9 million, thanks largely to restructuring charges. Revenue had been declining for the last two fiscal years, and came in at $1.87 billion for the last full fiscal year.

Private equity firm Francisco Partners ls leading the investment group, which also includes British Columbia Investment Management Corporation. The group will acquire Verifone for $23.04 per share, for a total of $3.4 billion, including debt.

The Verifone Board of Directors unanimously approved the agreement, which is expected to close during the third quarter of 2018, subject regulatory approvals. Upon completion, Verifone will become a privately held company.

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