MasterCard to buy French payment firm Stet?
MasterCard is believed to be mulling the acquisition of French payments processor Stet.
MasterCard told Banking Technology it “does not comment on rumours or speculation”.
Stet responded saying that “these are unfounded rumours” and that it “has no discussions of this type with MasterCard.”
Stet was set up in 2004 and is currently owned by five French banks.
The processor says its “services portfolio aims to provide PSPs [payment services providers] across SEPA an integrated solution for clearing and settlement for all payment instruments through a single access”.
Outside France, its major customer is a consortium of Belgian banks, which contracted Stet back in 2012 to provide processing, clearing and settlement of payment instruments, both SEPA and non-SEPA, for the 16 bank participants and the two card processors The solution supports multiple intraday cycles, settlement risk mitigation and online risk monitoring.
In 2013, Stet came close to signing a deal with Eesti Pank, Estonia’s central bank, to introduce a new SEPA-compliant, interbank retail payments system. However, the reluctance from banks in the country to join put paid to this venture.
Stet is currently processing over 15 billion transactions per year for French and Belgian banks, underpinned by Stet’s Java and Unix-based platform, Core.
In 2015/16, the vendor developed a new instant payment platform for PSPs in Europe and a new clearing and settlement mechanism (CSM) for SEPA. Named SEPA.eu, the new infrastructure will operate a multi-cycle, delivery-after settlement model.
MasterCard on a shopping spree
MasterCard is in the process of buying UK-based payments software and services provider Vocalink. The definitive agreement to acquire 92.4% of VocaLink for $920 million has been reached (there are regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions still to come).
The move has seen some criticism from the industry players, with AccessPay CEO Anish Kapoor saying the sale will “kill innovation” in UK payments.