Prosus considering PayU sale


Prosus is exploring potential divestments from its emerging-markets financial technology company PayU, according to people familiar with the matter.

The investment firm is working with Bank of America as it gauges interest in PayU’s business outside India, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.

It could fetch as much as $800 million from the potential deal, the people said.

PayU operates in more than 50 countries across Asia, Latin America, Europe and Africa, according to its website.

Prosus may consider selling the operations piecemeal to different buyers while retaining its valuable Indian business, the people said.

Deliberations are ongoing, and there’s no certainty they will result in a transaction. Representatives for Prosus and Bank of America declined to comment.

Prosus is controlled by century-old South African media group Naspers, which formed the company to hold its technology investments and listed the vehicle in Amsterdam in 2019.

Naspers, best known for a blockbuster bet on Tencent in the Chinese internet startup’s early days, has been seeking ways to unlock value after that holding ballooned in worth and overshadowed other parts of its business.

The unlisted payments and fintech assets of Prosus, including PayU, are worth around $4 billion, according to consensus estimates on its website.

Any deal would come at a challenging time for fintech companies as venture capital fundraising slows.

Still, payments have continued to be an active area for dealmaking, as traditional lenders look to exit the business and large payments groups seek to add scale and expand in new markets.

Prosus in October abandoned a planned acquisition of Indian online payments firm BillDesk.

Prosus, which has long seen payments as one of its core business units, has been busy reducing costs and doubling down on efforts to turn profitable by the first half of 2025.

Chief Investment Officer Ervin Tu said in an interview late last year that Prosus was working on multiple situations that could include mergers and sales as it seeks to boost shareholder returns.


Top JSE indices