Irish fintech company Sentenial scooped up by EML in €110m deal

7 Apr 2021

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The company behind the Nuapay open banking service has been acquired by Australia’s EML to expand beyond Europe.

EML Payments, an Australian payments firms, has acquired Irish fintech company Sentenial for up to €110m.

Sentenial is behind Nuapay, an outfit in the open banking space for deploying APIs and data sharing across financial services. It operates in Europe and is dual-licensed in the UK and France, processing €45bn annually and working with 1,750 banks.

The company was already working with EML on providing tech for managing transactions across different payment schemes, such as Mastercard to Visa.

The deal, which is subject to regulatory approval, will see EML acquire a 100pc stake in Sentenial at an upfront cost of €70m and an earn-out component of up to €40m.

EML intends to expand Sentenial and Nuapay’s service into the Australian and North America markets.

“Nuapay’s mission is to be the best way to pay and get paid. We are proud to have developed a market-leading account-to-account and open banking payments platform over nearly two decades in business,” Sentenial chief executive Sean Fitzgerald said.

“The revolution in payments caused by open banking and real-time payments is rapidly building momentum globally, and we are hugely excited by this opportunity to move to a global scale as part of EML,” he added.

Tom Cregan, EML’s chief executive, said that the Australian company is transitioning into a “broader payments business”.

“Sentenial operates an enterprise-grade payments platform processing over €45bn per annum, and is, therefore, a similar business to EML but servicing a different customer set with different payment types,” Cregan said. “Sentenial is a European business today, and we will be working to extend its platform to our other regions in the coming 12 to 18 months.”

Sentenial, which was founded in 2003, is headquartered in Ireland with offices in London, Paris, Brussels and Krakow.

The deal marks another major fintech acquisition in Ireland for EML. It acquired Navan’s Prepaid Financial Services in 2019.

Jonathan Keane is a freelance business and technology journalist based in Dublin