Finnish mobile payment app Pivo has been pulled from a three-way merger with MobilePay and Vipps after the European Commission raised concerns about the deal.
Last year, MobilePay, Pivo and Vipps – all bank-owned – announced plans to join forces to create a single payment app with a combined user base of 11 million consumers in Finland, Denmark and Norway.
However, with Danske Bank-owned MobilePay and OP Financial Group-owned Pivo both having large customer bases in Finland, the EC’s Competition Directorate-General sounded the alarm.
This forced Danske Bank and the consortium of lenders behind Vipps to go ahead without OP Financial and Pivo. The revised plan still needs to be approved by the EC.
Christian Bornfeld, Head of Personal Customers, Danske Bank, says: “MobilePay in Denmark and Finland will still merge with Vipps. The parties’ ambition to create a cross-border mobile payment wallet has not changed.
“Danske Bank and the Norwegian banks behind Vipps would have preferred the merger, as planned, to include OP Financial Group and Pivo, but we respect the Commission’s concerns and now hope for early approval.”
The change means that the new company, called Vipps MobilePay, will now be 27.8% owned by Danske and 72.2% by the Norwegian consortium.