Tue, 10 Sep 2019 | BUSINESS SALE
Sage Group, the FTSE-100 technology firm which is thought to be the biggest in the UK, has decided to sell Sage Pay, the payment processing division which caters to thousands of SMEs customers.
Headquartered in Newcastle, the company has hired investment bank Rothschild to find buyers for Sage Pay, which is known to have an estimated 50,000 small business customers.
However, in spite of a solid customer base, a source close to the company revealed that Sage Pay only accounted for a small fraction of the group’s total sales and profits.
Details of Sage Pay’s valuation and potential buyers have yet to be revealed to the public, but those handling the sale at Rothschild have encouraged all interested parties to come forward. The bankers have anticipated interest from a number of other payment firms, as well as private equity companies.
The move to sell Sage Pay follows the group’s decision to sell its payments software division in the US in 2017, and its payroll division in January this year. The strategic decisions are in line with industry takeover activity, which has risen in recent years due to platforms opting to merge and acquire companies within the payments sector.
The group is focusing its efforts on transforming itself into a cloud software firm which provides human resources, accounting and payroll services for business consumers. The company appointed Steve Hare as its new chief executive last year in an attempt to make the shift.
However, Sage disclosed a significant fall in software and software-related revenues, forcing its shares to fall by 11 per cent at the end of July – the steepest decline in a single day in 16 years.
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