Morpho to acquire ABnote Europe
Morpho (Safran group) announced the signing of an agreement with American Banknote to acquire its subsidiaries CPS Technologies, an expert in bank card personalization in France, which employs 125 people, and ABnote Czech, a card manufacturing and personalization center based in the Czech Republic, which employs 85 people.
With this acquisition, Morpho aims at enhancing its European network of bank card personalization centers and improve its ability to offer its customers proximity payment card solutions and services: Morpho’s position in the French market will be strengthened thanks to CPS Technologies bank card personalization and Trusted Service Management Center in Lyon. Morpho and CPS Technologies started their relationship in 2002 to supply major French and European banks with personalized credit and debit cards.
ABnote Czech will bring to Morpho a key industrial asset, enhancing its manufacturing and personalization capabilities in the heart of the fast-growing Eastern Europe banking card market. ABnote Czech has been a qualified Morpho supplier of EMV card bodies since 2010.
The closing of the transaction is expected before year end.
The sale excludes ABnote’s International Business unit, located in Germany, which will continue to focus on international markets.
With this transaction, Morpho reinforces itself on the European markets especially for banking cards, where Morpho already claims a 25% marketshare in France. The addition of a personalization center to Morpho’s offer will allow the company to propose a complete offer to its bank customers. Also, the market coverage of CPS Technologies and ABnote Czech will help Morpho improving its market presence.
Morpho already operates personalization centers in Germany, Russia, Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, and India. The recent acquisition of Cassis added a personalization center in Malaysia, and the new acquisition of ABnote European activities brings personalization centers in France and the Czech Republic.
The acquisition also includes ABnote TSM (Trusted Service Manager) unit for NFC, which was integrated as a part of CPS Technologies. Further to its previous acquisition, Morpho is expected to combine Cassis TSM development capabilities, with CPS experience in TSM operation.
At the same time, ABnote will use proceeds from the sale to reinvest in its North American operations, with a special focus on the upcoming EMV migration in the US. A part of the proceeds will also help to reinforce ABnote Australasia with a focus on transit and ticketing.
ABnote had previously announced the expansion of its Boston, Massachusetts, USA manufacturing site for the production and personalization of secure EMV products, and plans to launch a TSM center in January 2013.