First Data Corp. and Fleetcor are bringing their various gift card operations together in a joint venture designed to streamline distribution and share digital gift card technology.
First Data Corp. will combine its core gift card business, along with its Transactions Wireless and Gyft units, with Fleetcor Technologies’ Stored Value Solutions (SVS) prepaid card services and gift card program management assets, the companies said in a Monday press release.
First Data, with broad e-commerce and payments processing operations in addition to its large closed-loop gift card business, will own 57.5% of the new venture. Fleetcor, a provider of fuel cards and workforce payment products along with prepaid and gift card solutions, will own the remaining 42.5%. The business units participating in the joint venture drove combined revenue of $362 million last year, according to the release.
The new venture will enable First Data and Fleetcor to expand their respective international reach and improve overall features of traditional and digital gift cards, the companies said in the release. Examples include enabling corporate customers to sell digital gift cards on their own websites, using gift cards in promotions and selling and reloading gift cards at Gyft’s website, they explained.
“We are combining the strengths of both our businesses to give clients the most robust gift offering available,” said Frank Bisignano, First Data’s chairman and CEO, in the release.
“By combining our SVS business with First Data’s businesses, we will be able to serve our clients in a more integrated and more comprehensive fashion,” added Ron Clarke, Fleetcor’s chairman and CEO.
A team of analysts from Keefe, Bruyette & Woods praised the deal in a note sent to investors this week. “(The combination) enhances both companies’ product sets and opens the door for potential expense synergies and additional revenue opportunities over the long term,” the analysts wrote.
The joint venture is expected to be finalized within three to six months, pending regulatory approval.