Mexican payments network Prosa seeks buyer at $1 billion-plus valuation: sources

·2 min read

By David French

(Reuters) - Mexican payments network Prosa is exploring a sale that could value it at more than $1 billion, people familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

Owned by a consortium of banks including Grupo Financiero Banorte and the local arms of HSBC and Banco Santander, Prosa provides the infrastructure that facilitates more than half the payments in Mexico.

It is also one of the largest payment processors in Latin America, completing around 4.7 billion transactions in 2020.

A sale process for Prosa run by an investment bank has been under way in recent weeks, with the company attracting interest from a number of large payments and financial technology firms, said the sources, who cautioned there was no guarantee a deal would be struck.

The sources spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss confidential matters. Prosa did not respond to comment requests.

Companies that process digital payments across Latin America have drawn significant interest from both private and public investors, as well as companies seeking access to a market that is expanding rapidly, on account of a young tech-savvy population and the fact many countries have traditionally lacked banking infrastructure.

On Wednesday, Montevideo, Uruguay-based dLocal Ltd is due to price an initial public offering on the Nasdaq that will value the company, which processes payments in 29 mostly emerging market countries, as highly as $5 billion. The listing has already secured backing from U.S. asset management firm Fidelity Management and Research.

Last year, Visa Inc bought payments startup YellowPepper, which operates in nine Latin American countries, to bolster its offerings in the region.

The other banks that own part of Prosa are Invex Controladora, Banjercito, and the local unit of Bank of Nova Scotia.

(Reporting by David French in New York; Additional reporting by Daina Beth Solomon in Mexico City; Editing by Matthew Lewis)