Strategic acquisition creates global leader, transforming digital identity and fraud prevention

  • Combination supports GBG’s purpose to build trust in a digital world, delivering differentiated solutions for all points of the identity verification and identity fraud customer journey

  • Acquisition enables GBG to further expand into the US – the world’s largest and most strategically important market for location, identity and fraud services

  • Combination accelerates GBG’s data, product and technology ambitions, delivering world-class technology across the customer lifecycle and bringing together the industry’s most skilled experts in identity verification and fraud prevention
    LONDON, Nov. 18, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — GB Group plc (AIM: GBG), the experts in digital location, identity and identity fraud software, has today announced that it has reached agreement to acquire Acuant, a leading identity verification and KYC/AML compliance provider, for a cash-free, debt-free enterprise value of $736 million. The acquisition of Acuant brings together two of the leaders in the global digital identity market with a combined revenue of c.£265 million.

A long-time partner, Acuant has a product suite that is a natural complement to GBG’s existing US-based services from IDology. The acquisition creates a leader in the strategically important North American market and accelerates the rollout of GBG’s identity and fraud solutions globally. The combined product portfolio will provide the industry’s best end-to-end capabilities and an enhanced technology platform that will support both companies’ existing network of partners and customers as they manage billions of global transactions across multiple industry sectors.

Acuant has purposefully developed its Trusted Identity Platform with a powerful orchestration layer and easy to configure journey builder, making best-in-class technology accessible to all. This platform enables the seamless combination of data, documents, biometrics and analytics for consumption across the entire customer lifecycle: onboarding, step-up authentication, KYC/AML compliance, fraud and risk analysis, real-time monitoring and identity re-use.  These capabilities, available as point solutions or integrated services, are applicable across all consumer or citizen facing markets and can be deployed globally, building upon GBG’s existing presence in APAC and EMEA.

The platform is scalable internationally, allowing GBG and Acuant customers to deploy solutions in multiple geographies and accelerating GBG’s growth in APAC and Europe.

The global identity verification market is projected to reach $15.8 billion by 2025 and the fast-growing identity fraud market is projected to be worth $9.6 billion by 2025[i]. GBG’s acquisition of Acuant strengthens its offering in both markets with a solution for any industry that needs to trust an identity, whether driven by managing compliance, reducing the cost of fraud or improving customer experience at the point of purchase.

GBG and Acuant share a common vision to create a platform that enables trust in the digital economy, and this vision is underpinned by similar cultures and common values, proven over years of collaboration on existing commercial projects. Acuant brings a team of over 200 highly experienced digital IDV professionals and over 1,000 customers, with nearly half of revenues powered by Acuant’s strong channel partner network.

This transaction is expected to complete all necessary legal and regulatory steps by end November 2021.

Chris Clark, Chief Executive Officer at GBG, said: “We are delighted to announce the acquisition of Acuant. It is a business that we have worked with and admired for many years. The combination of our two businesses is a complementary and powerful one. Together we create a global leader in data, document and biometric identity verification services and strengthen our mutual capability to capitalise on the fast-growing identity fraud market.

The US is the largest and most strategic market for location, identity and fraud services. The combination of GBG and Acuant provides a step-change in this market, increasing scale, growing our customer base and introducing us to new and exciting sectors. As importantly, it also strengthens the breadth of our technology portfolio which we can use to support our current customers in new ways in growth geographies such as APAC and Europe where we already have a strong footprint. 

The team at Acuant brings new skills and talent to GBG, as well as an aligned culture and shared vision to enable trust in the digital economy. We are excited about the potential of the combined businesses and the acceleration this gives to our strategic goals.

Yossi Zekri, Chief Executive Officer at Acuant, said: “This is an exciting day for Acuant. We are very proud of everything that Acuant has achieved to date – building a world-class technology portfolio and a strong market position across multiple sectors. There is still significant opportunity ahead and joining the GBG family is the best way for us to capitalise on those opportunities. Our customer, technology and geographical mix are complementary and culturally we are aligned in our mission, vision, and how we invest in our people and look after our customers. We are very much looking forward to working together in the years ahead.”

About GBG

GBG are the experts in digital location, identity and identity fraud software, helping organisations across the globe eliminate friction from their digital experiences. GBG develop and deliver digital identity, address verification, fraud prevention and compliance software to over 20,000 customers globally.

Through the combination of the latest technology, the most accurate data and unrivalled expertise, GBG helps organisations ranging from start-ups to the largest consumer and technology brands in the world deliver seamless experiences, enabling their customers to transact online with greater confidence.

Headquartered in the UK with over 1,000 team members across 15 countries.

To find out more about how we help our customers establish trust with their customers, visit www.gbgplc.com 

About Acuant

Acuant’s Trusted Identity Platform empowers businesses and governments to transact with trust in our digital world. Acuant establishes trust in seconds anywhere consumers, governments and businesses want to transact, fighting fraud and fast-tracking trusted identities. The ability to build, verify, monitor and securely share digital identities with Acuant’s inclusive technology is accessible to the entire global population. AI-powered identity verification and regulatory compliance (AML/KYC) solutions deliver unparalleled results and operational efficiency with omni-channel deployment.

Completing more than 1.5 billion transactions in over 200 countries and territories, Acuant powers trust globally for industry leaders in finance, crypto, retail, healthcare, gaming, hospitality and more.

[1] Source: Markets and Markets Identity Verification, and Fraud Detection and Prevention Reports (2020-2021).

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