It seems as if the news breaks monthly with the “biggest deal ever” in some aspect of fintech. That’s why it was only mildly shocking this week when word came out that bank technology giant FIS agreed to pay $35 billion for Worldpay in the largest digital payments M&A deal to date.
The deal is part of an escalating arms race among the financial technology sector’s biggest players. FIS, along with Fiserv and Jack Henry & Associates comprise the “Big Three” of U.S. bank core systems vendors, whose software powers the operations of roughly 90% of the financial institutions in the country. But with all areas of digital financial services—especially payments—the pressure is on these technology vendors to offer a wider portfolio of digital services.
That’s why we could see even further consolidation in the fintech industry; indeed, one could say FIS’s move was a response to its rival Fiserv’s January acquisition of e-commerce payments powerhouse First Data in a $22-billion deal.
We’ll go out on a limb and say this won’t be the biggest value M&A deal in fintech before 2019 is said and done.