Assembly Payments CurrencyFair to merge

The transaction has resulted from a strategic investment by Standard Chartered’s innovation, ventures and fintech investments unit, SC Ventures.

It reported the investment arm has doubled down on a commitment to the payments industry, after initially investing in Assembly Payments last year.

Paul Byrne, chief executive of CurrencyFair, will lead the consolidated business.

Bill Winters, group CEO of Standard Chartered commented digital payments is a core strategic area for the bank, with its investment in Assembly boosting its presence in the Aussie market.

“By bringing together the complementary strengths of CurrencyFair and Assembly, we are supporting the merged company in offering the full range of payment services, providing retail and corporate clients access to fast, high-volume domestic and cross-border payments,” Mr Winters said.

Will Prendergast, chair of CurrencyFair added the merger will allow the firm to develop “beyond the traditional transactional nature of a payments company and provide a core suite of integrated financial services”.

“The merged proposition will focus on five core capabilities – payments, global payment accounts, partner ecosystem, lending and settlement, and services – to address the growth opportunities in the US$2 trillion revenue market for payments,” Mr Prendergast said.

The company will target opportunities in global e-commerce, with a boom in online shopping post-COVID, as well as corporate demand for more value-added services from payments providers.

A statement from CurrencyFair and SC Ventures stated the merged entity will focus on addressing key pain points such as the fragmentation of payment ecosystems and technical, operational, financial, and regulatory difficulties, as well as privacy and security of data.

Alex Manson, head of SC Ventures said: “Ecommerce is one of the highest conviction themes for SC Ventures, and we will continue to grow and scale our capabilities and geographies to support the transition to digital economies.”

The Assembly Payments board added businesses will be increasing investment in digitising their products and services.

“As a result, the importance of providing complementary payment services such as non-card payments, fraud management, reconciliation, foreign exchange and liquidity via a product-rich experience is critical,” the board said in a statement.

“As a combined proposition, we believe Assembly Payments and CurrencyFair are perfectly positioned to address these challenges in the global cross border business payments market.”

The merger is subject to shareholder and regulatory approval.