Wirecard buys Great Indian Retail Group payments business

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German payments company Wirecard WDIG.DE has agreed to buy the payments business of Great Indian Retail Group, a major southeast Asian electronic payment and e-commerce business.

Munich-based Wirecard, one of Europe’s leading online-payment service providers, will pay 230 million euros ($254 million) in cash, financed by its own capital and committed bank loans, it said in a statement on Tuesday.

The deal includes 60 percent of the shares of GI Technology, part of Great Indian Retail Group and an issuer of prepaid cash-card, mobile-wallet and remittance technology.

GI Technology provides hundreds of thousands of Indians without bank accounts the ability to use cash for online payments or money remittance. Its cash cards can be topped up at banks, local stores or by mobile phone.

Wirecard will take over more than 900 staff in India, the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia as part of the deal, which includes the iCashcard, Smartshop, StarGlobal and Commerce Payment brands.

The businesses it is buying are expected to achieve earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of more than 7 million euros this year and up to 18 million euros next year after integration costs, Wirecard said.

Sales are seen at 45 million euros this year, rising to more than 75 million in 2016.

Wirecard had been reported to be in the running to buy British payments processing company Worldpay, WPG.L, which instead went public this month in a London listing that valued the business at $7.4 billion.

Shares in Wirecard, which has a market capitalisation of about 5.54 billion euros, were down 0.6 percent at 44.76 euros, broadly in line with Germany's Tecdax index .TECDAX.

Reporting by Georgina Prodhan; Editing by David Goodman