IPayment Inc., a payments processor for more than 150,000 U.S. merchants, is exploring options including a sale that could value the company at as much as $1 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said.
The company is working with JPMorgan Chase & Co. on a strategic review, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. IPayment would probably attract interest from both private equity firms and peers should it proceed with a sale process, the people said.
A representative for JPMorgan declined to comment, while a spokesman for IPayment didn’t respond to a request for comment.
A number of card-processing companies have been the subject of buyout speculation as the sector consolidates. Atos SE, a French computer-services provider, is considering making an offer for Atlanta-based EVO Payments International, while Worldpay Group Plc was the subject of offers from peersIngenico Group SA and Wirecard AG before being listed by its private equity backers in October.
IPayment was taken private in 2006 by executives including Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Carl Grimstad, who was president at the time. Last year, Moody’s Investors Service cut the company’s debt rating by two grades, to Caa2 from B3, citing an elevated risk of default after IPayment reported losses and fewer businesses using its services.