BROOKFIELD, Wis. -- The client list at Fiserv Inc. grew by 3,000 in a single day as the company completed its largest acquisition yet with the purchase of CheckFree Corp.
The $4.4 billion deal means Fiserv now serves more than 21,000 customers from 275 locations worldwide with more than 25,000 employees.
Atlanta based CheckFree provides online banking, bill pay and investment portfolio services to organizations with assets of more than $1.8 trillion under management.
"This is an historic day for Fiserv," Jeffery Yabuki, president/CEO of Fiserv, said in announcing on Dec. 4 that the acquisition was complete.
"CheckFree's key strengths -- world-class products and a culture of dynamic innovation -- will accelerate our Fiserv 2.0 strategies, resulting in a client value proposition unrivaled in the market today," Yabuki said.
Fiserv 2.0 is the company's strategy for encouraging its various specialized technology service providers to independently build on their core competencies and then offer their products and services across Fiserv's increasingly diversified client base. (In the credit union core processing space, for instance, that takes the form of things like Galaxy Plus Credit Union Systems developing payday lending software that the other six Fiserv credit union core processing units also can offer to their thousands of clients.)
Concentrating on its core business, the CheckFree deal brings to Fiserv a client base of large financial institutions and follows closely on the heels of the company's divestment of its healthcare-related businesses.
Fiserv said it now has "the expertise, solutions and scale to support financial
institutions of any size in a number of areas including core processing, electronic billing, risk management, payments (including cash and logistics, ACH, imaging, online, phone, emergency and walk-in) and wealth management/managed accounts."
Pete Kight, former CheckFree chairman and CEO, will become Fiserv's vice chairman and lead new product development and strategic integration, the company said. Steve Olsen, CheckFree's former COO, will become Fiserv's group president of Internet banking and electronic payments.
"CheckFree has defined innovation in online banking, electronic billing and payment, financial software and payment infrastructures, and the delivery of investment services technology for managed accounts," Kight said.
"Now, we have the opportunity to integrate and innovate with the unrivaled breadth and scale of Fiserv's technology platforms. We have an opportunity to create compelling value for our clients in areas that are tremendously important to their success and growth."
Yabuki said, "Going forward, we are in the enviable position of having numerous market leading products and services, along with a fantastic group of employees working together to deliver increased value for our clients and shareholders. We couldn't be more excited about the future."
Fiserv is paying for CheckFree with $2.5 billion from a five-year term loan, $1.75 billion from publicly issued five and 10-year notes, and proceeds from its credit facilities. The two companies had combined 2006 sales of $4.5 billion.