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Payment firm Nets receives 33.1b Danish crowns takeover bid from Hellman & Friedman

[COPENHAGEN] Payments firm Nets said it has received a takeover offer worth 33.1 billion Danish crowns (S$7.14 billion) from US private equity firm Hellman & Friedman, in what could rank as one of the take-private deals in Europe in recent years.

The offer comes after Nets said in early July that it had been approached by potential buyers.

The fragmented payments industry is seeing a wave of mergers and acquisitions as consumers increasingly switch to card and mobile payments and as regulatory changes promise to open the market to more competition.

Worldpay and Paysafe were recent buyout targets.

Hellman & Friedman's offer of 165 crowns per share represents a 27 percent premium to Nets's share price as of June 30. Nets shares rose 6.4 percent higher in early trade.

Nets said shareholders representing 46 per cent of its share capital had agreed to accept the offer.

"We believe the offer represents attractive value to Nets' shareholders," Nets chairman Inge Hansen said in a statement.

"Hellman & Friedman approached us in June, following which we received a number of other expressions of interest and held discussions with selected parties," she said.

Reuters earlier reported that Hellman & Friedman along with Permira and Nordic Capital all had completed due diligence on Nets.


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