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Zip eyes expansion by acquiring European BNPL Provider Twisto and UAE’s Spotii

By Leandra Monteiro

May 24, 2021

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Zip, SMEs, BNPL, Buy now pay later, FinTech, Australia, B2B, Twisto, Spotii, UAE, European Zip Co announced that it has agreed to acquire the remaining shares of European “Buy Now Pay Later” provider Twisto Payments and has also entered into an agreement to acquire the remaining shares of UAE-based BNPL leader Spotii Holdings Ltd.

The transactions align with Zip’s global expansion plans and the rapidly accelerating global BNPL market. Zip is building its playbook by identifying, completing, and integrating strategic acquisitions. Twisto and Spotii are now well-positioned to leverage the benefits of this competency and the synergies of a global payments organisation. Twisto and Spotii are integrated into Zip’s global Single Merchant Interface (SMI), which provides merchants instant access to 11 countries across five continents.

The decision to acquire Twisto marks an important step in Zip’s European strategy. The acquisition will complement Zip’s UK presence, which launched earlier this year, and provides a gateway to one of the largest eCommerce markets globally. Zip will purchase the remaining shares in Twisto that Zip does not already own for an amount of $140 million. The completion of the acquisition is expected to occur in Q4 CY21.

Twisto Founder and Chief Executive Officer Michal Smida said, “We’re excited to join the global Zip team to take advantage of the significant European opportunity and to continue to develop innovative BNPL solutions. There is a massive opportunity in Europe as BNPL follows the global trend with a shift away from the unfriendly world of credit cards. With Twisto’s existing operations in Central Europe, we are uniquely positioned to tackle the $1.1 trillion European eCommerce market. Being part of Zip’s global platform will allow us to accelerate growth, expand to new markets, win global merchants operating in Europe, leverage global partnerships already in place and broaden our product offering. We share the same ethos – striving relentlessly to deliver the best omnichannel payments experience to both customers and merchants.”

Zip Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Larry Diamond said, “The acquisition of Twisto shows our commitment to global growth and follows our ‘Coalition of Founders’ model, where we back strong founders with a shared vision and deep cultural alignment in our quest for global payments coverage. We are very much looking forward to adding this strategic geography to our growing footprint and fulfilling global merchant demand. We have been impressed by the Twisto team, their deep customer focus and product set and look forward to working closely with them to deliver on the opportunities we jointly have in front of us.”

The acquisition of Spotii establishes Zip among the major players in the Middle East, with Spotii operational in the UAE and KSA, and poised to expand further. Under the acquisition, Zip will purchase the remaining shares in Spotii that Zip does not already own for an amount of $21 million, implying an enterprise value of $26 million. The completion of the acquisition is expected to occur in Q3 CY21.

Anuscha Ahmed, Spotii’s Co-Founder and CEO said, “Since founding Spotii in early 2020, we’ve seen significant uptake of the platform by merchants and customers, highlighting the appetite and need for BNPL solutions in the MENA region. Joining forces with Zip – a global leader in the BNPL space – will enable us to drive further growth by tapping into the company’s advanced technology and expertise. For merchants, it means greater access to customers outside the MENA region, while BNPL customers in the regional markets will have greater access to international merchants. Ultimately, it highlights the Middle East as a growing region for eCommerce and BNPL offerings.”

Zip Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Larry Diamond said, “The Spotii acquisition is an important step in Zip’s global expansion and international strategy, with Ecommerce in the Middle East on a significant upward trajectory. We have been working with Spotii since our initial investment in December 2020 to broaden our understanding of the BNPL opportunity in the region and have a number of exciting global merchants we are looking forward to activating in the coming months. We also believe there is a large untapped opportunity to bring BNPL to emerging markets where cash on delivery remains a significant merchant challenge, and where the digitisation of retail accelerates.”

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