Private equity transformed a division of majority state-owned Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) Group into a fully independent and publicly-listed, global payments business, creating 2,500 new jobs (including a 400% increase in engineering headcount).
When Advent International and Bain Capital carved out Worldpay from RBS in 2010, the company had strong customer heritage, global scale and a first mover position in Ecommerce, but it needed a new strategic direction and significant investment to improve its technology and customer offering. The private equity firms separated the business from its parent, in what was a highly complex process, helped management redefine Worldpay’s strategy, assisted with seven acquisitions and supported a significant technology investment programme. As a result, earnings grew 11% a year between 2012 and 2014. Worldpay went public in October 2015 with a market capitalisation of £4.8bn, making it the UK's fourth largest IPO ever.
Independence and private ownership allowed us to become a global leader in payments through long-term investment in our technology, our people and our business.
Ron Kalifa Deputy Chairman, Worldpay
What did the business need?
- Assistance with separation from former parent RBS
- Investment and expertise to develop technology
- Strategic input to define a clear mission and broaden the product offering
- Preparation for transition to public market ownership
How did private equity backing create lasting value?
- Separated the business from its parent, creating an independent technology platform
- Established a strategic blueprint for each division
- Supported ~£400m investment in new technology; invested ~£300 in seven strategic acquisitions
- Created new organisational structure and hired industry-leading talent to company and board
- Supported product innovation
What outcomes did private equity investment achieve?
- Created over 2,500 new jobs primarily in Europe since 2010
- Grew underlying earnings by 11% per annum
- Built new stand-alone technology platform