Ingenico Group, a French payment service provider, has received the go-ahead from the Commerce Commission to buy New Zealand payments system operator Paymark, which is owned by ANZ, ASB, BNZ and Westpac.

The deal, valued at NZD190m ($126.6m), was first announced in January this year.

In giving the nod to the deal, the Commission mulled whether the integration of Paymark’s switch with Ingenico’s terminal business might lower competition for payment terminal supply.

The agency cleared the deal after finding that the takeover would not lead to competition issues in the concerned markets or in the supply of digital payment services.

Commission chair Mark Berry said: “This is a complex market that is evolving with the introduction of new payment systems technology. On balance, we considered that there were sufficient constraints in the market to ensure that Ingenico is motivated to keep the market for payment terminals attractive to merchants.

“Attempting to prevent or deter access by its terminal competitors to the Paymark switch would risk rivals building their own payment switch or encourage merchants to take up new payment technologies. We concluded that Ingenico would likely be incentivised to seek to maximise the volume of transactions that Paymark processes to avoid this risk.”

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