CMA Invites Comments on Visa Acquisition of Plaid Inc

The authority is trying to assess whether the acquisition will substantially lessen market competition.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced this Tuesday that it is inviting comments on the proposed acquisition which will see Visa Inc buy Plaid Inc, a privately held software startup, in a deal worth $5.3 billion.

In a statement published by the CMA today, the authority said that it is considering: “whether it is or may be the case that this transaction if carried into effect, will result in the creation of a relevant merger situation under the merger provisions of the Enterprise Act 2002 and, if so, whether the creation of that situation may be expected to result, in a substantial lessening of competition within any market or markets in the United Kingdom for goods or services.”

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As such, the CMA asks that any interested party comment on the transaction, in order to help assist the regulator with its assessment. In particular, the CMA asks parties to reach out to Julie Flandrin, the Principal Case Officer at Julie.Flandrin@cma.gov.uk.

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Visa announced the acquisition in January

As Finance Magnates reported, Visa announced its intention to acquire Plaid in January of this year. The deal will give the payments giant greater access to the growing financial technology space. The acquisition also highlighted the increasing importance of companies operating in the digital and cashless economy.

The $5.3 billion deal includes $4.9 billion of cash consideration and the rest in retention equity and deferred equity. The transaction is expected to close in the next three to six months.

Plaid Inc has built technical infrastructure APIs that connect consumers, traditional financial institutions, and developers. Namely, the company’s technology allows users to link their bank accounts to mobile apps such as Venmo, Chime, and more.

Plaid has established a strong position in servicing the digital and cashless economy. According to the San Francisco-based fintech firm, its systems have been used by one in four people with a bank account in the United States.

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