French payments group Worldline to buy Digital River World Payments

PARIS (Reuters) - French payments company Worldline has agreed to buy Swedish peer Digital River World Payments as merger activity in the payments sector picks up following this month’s takeover of Worldpay.

Worldline did not disclose how much it had paid for Digital River World Payments (DRWP), but the company said DRWP had 2016 gross revenue of around 37 million euros ($42.3 million).

“With the acquisition of DRWP, we are accelerating the execution of our strategy in Merchant Services and significantly increasing both our internet payment capabilities and our global reach to support international merchants and large retailers,” Worldline Chief Executive Gilles Grapinet said in a statement.

This month, U.S. credit card processor Vantiv agreed to buy Britain’s Worldpay for 7.7 billion pounds ($10 billion), in a move expected to trigger further deals.

Payments companies have become targets for credit card companies and banks seeking to capitalize on a switch from cash transactions to paying by smartphone or other mobile devices.

Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; editing by Jason Neely