Marking its entry into the South
African ATM market, US payments processor First Data has acquired
ATM deployment specialist CashAxcess from South African investment
companies Mvelaphanda and Venfin for an undisclosed sum.
Established in 2005 CashAxcess provides outsourced ATM services to
two second tier local banks, Mercantile and Capitec, and to ABSA,
one of the four major banks. CashAxcess also offers a range of ATM
products and services to the corporate and retail market, including
ATM installation, signage, wireless GPRS communication, cash
management and ATM monitoring and sales and marketing.
“ATM outsourcing is a growth area within the South African payments
market as banks look to drive more cost efficiencies through their
operations,” commented Estevao Tokata, the director with
responsibility for First Data’s sales organisation in Africa.
“Increasingly, banks are concentrating on building and providing
core banking services to their customers while working with
specialist partners such as First Data to enhance the breadth of
payment solutions offered to their customers.”
Still a minor player in South Africa’s ATM market, CashAxcess has
200 ATMs deployed – or just over 1 percent of the country’s total
ATM population of some 17,000 machines. The country’s largest
non-bank operator, ATM Solutions, operates some 3,000 ATMs.
First Data has had a presence in South Africa since 1993 where it
has to date focused on offering services including card acquiring,
processing and switching, merchant acquiring and POS
Though acquisition of CashAxcess marks First Data’s first purchase
in the country it has from all accounts been keen on local
expansion for some time, and in 2007 was widely reported in the
South African media to have been one of six South African and two
foreign companies to have submitted bids to acquire full control of
Bancserv. Controlled by the country’s four major banks, Bancserv
provides interbank settlement services and ATM and POS transaction
switching to South African banks and to some banks in Africa.
The mooted sale of Bancserv ultimately did not proceed, certain
shareholders remain keen to transform it into a profit-making