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CO-OP Acquires Interest in Everlink

Thu, Apr 23, 2015

Rancho Cucamonga, California

CO-OP Financial Services has signed an agreement to purchase from a subsidiary of Fidelity National Information Services, Inc. (NYSE: FIS) its shares in Everlink Payment Services, Inc., which will give CO-OP majority ownership of the Canadian payments solutions and services provider to credit unions, banks and ISOs in Canada.

A subsidiary of FIS (www.fisglobal.com) and CO-OP (www.co-opfs.org) have signed a definitive agreement on the transfer of Everlink shares, subject to contractual closing conditions.  

CO-OP does not currently hold shares in Everlink (www.everlink.ca), based in Markham, Ontario, about 20 miles outside of Toronto. Upon closing, the Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.-based company will join minority-owner Celero Solutions (www.celero.ca) of Calgary, Alberta, as the two shareholders of Everlink. Celero is a service corporation providing information technology solutions to credit unions and other financial services organizations across Canada.   

“Everlink provides a broad range of payments solutions, including card issuance, fraud management, ATM managed services, point-of-sale and debit payment processing primarily for credit unions, which are similar businesses to that of CO-OP,” said Stan Hollen, President/CEO of CO-OP. “We have had a limited presence in Canada. The acquisition of an interest in Everlink enables us to expand our network to clients throughout North America. In fact, we see this investment as a foundation step to a comprehensive North America-wide network and processing solution for credit unions, making it even more convenient for members in both Canada and the U.S. to use ATMs and their debit cards.”

“The purchase of our Everlink shares by CO-OP is an outgrowth of FIS’ close working relationship with CO-OP, which now extends back more than 25 years,” said Bruce Lowthers, Executive Vice President, North American Retail Payments, FIS. “We look forward to continuing a successful association with Everlink as both a customer and provider of services.”

“CO-OP’s purchase of FIS’ position in Everlink helps ensure that this valuable asset to the credit union movement remains within the industry’s ownership,” said Hollen. “We foresee inviting other Canadian cooperatives into ownership participation of Everlink to further contribute to the growth of our movement and offer consumers the best option among competing financial institutions.”

“We are pleased to have a strong cooperative system player like CO-OP enter the partnership in Everlink,” said Bob Reczka, CEO of Celero. “CO-OP brings significant expertise and scale advantages that will benefit participating financial institutions across Canada. We strongly support building greater capabilities, efficiencies and control for credit unions in the area of payments and the intent to expand Canadian credit union ownership in Everlink has been a fundamental principle of this transaction from the outset.”

“The growing importance of member experience at the self-service channel is one of the leading issues for financial institutions in 2015,” said Mark Ripplinger, President/CEO of Everlink. “The resources that CO-OP brings to bear on this market trend – be it locations-, payments- or mobile-based – will substantially benefit our clients and the entire credit union movement in Canada.”

There are approximately 700 credit unions and caisse poplulaires with more than 10 million members in Canada.

For more information, visit www.co-opfs.org.

About CO-OP Financial Services

Based in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., and founded in 1981, CO-OP Financial Services is the nation’s largest credit union service organization in terms of number of credit unions, assets and members. The company helps credit unions thrive by providing products and services that make it more convenient for members to do business with them. With a motto of “Be There. Be More,” CO-OP’s products fall into three business lines, including “Locations,” (ATM, shared branching and call center services); “Card Payments” (debit and credit processing) and “Mobile/Virtual” (mobile, online, check imaging, bill pay services). To learn more visit www.co-opfs.org.

About Celero Solutions

Celero is a leading provider of IT solutions to financial institutions across Canada and is consistently ranked among the world’s top financial technology companies, on the annual FinTech 100 list. With over 250 highly experienced team members located across Canada, Celero provides a comprehensive range of banking technology and professional services. Financial institutions of all sizes across Canada trust their mission critical technology needs to Celero with its world-class reliability; multiple Canadian data centers and robust operational processes. For more information about Celero, visit (www.celero.ca).

About Everlink Payment Services Inc.

Everlink is a leading provider of comprehensive, innovative and integrated payments solutions and services for credit unions, banks and independent sales organizations (ISOs) across Canada. In addition to supplying best-in-breed technology infrastructure and payment network connectivity via our well established Payment Network Gateway, we offer a diversified range of integrated payments Lines of Business including: ATM Managed Services, Card Issuance and Management, Fraud Management, POS Acquiring and Professional Services.