First Data completes acquisition of Argencard

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

US electronic transaction and payment solutions provider First Data International has completed the acquisition of Argentine credit card company Argencard, First Data said in a statement.

First Data did not disclose the sale price but Argentine newspaper La Nación said the company had acquired Argencard from Argentine investment group Exxel for some US$240mn-250mn.

Both companies had signed an agreement to complete the merger in late August.

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"Argencard is the cornerstone of our growth strategy in South America... We are well positioned to expand our footprint across the region and leverage our global reach and local presence to assemble the right solutions to fit our clients' unique local market requirements," First Data president Pam Patsley said.

Argencard is the exclusive issuer of MasterCard (NYSE: MA) in Argentina and Uruguay and has issued nearly 9 million credit cards in both countries.

The company also announced that it plans to operate under the name of First Data International.

In Latin America, First Data also owns Panama-based Processing Center (Procesa).

The firm has more than 7,500 employees and operates across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Latin America, Canada, Australia and Asia Pacific.

First Data International is part of credit card processing company First Data Corp (NYSE: FDC), the world's largest electronic commerce and payment services processor.