NCR in $1.7 billion bidding war for ATM maker

NCR, based in Midtown, is in a bidding war to but ATM operator Cardtronics. J. Scott Trubey/strubey@ajc.com
NCR, based in Midtown, is in a bidding war to but ATM operator Cardtronics. J. Scott Trubey/strubey@ajc.com

NCR wants to acquire the world’s biggest operator of ATMs. But first, it must win a bidding war.

The Atlanta financial technology company is trying to acquire Cardtronics in an all-cash deal worth $1.7 billion, or $39 per share. That topped an earlier offer of $35 per share from investment firms Apollo Global Management and Hudson Executive Capital.

Houston-based Cardtronics has entered talks with NCR, but has not accepted the offer. The board of Cardtronics had previously voted in favor of accepting the offer from Apollo and Hudson.

If NCR prevails, it can seize market share from rivals, said Richard Crone, a Silicon Valley financial technology consultant. About two-thirds of Cardtronics’ network of 285,000 ATMs is made by NCR rivals like Diebold Nixdorf and Hyosung. NCR will replace those ATMs with its own.

Advanced ATMs that feature interactive video and other services have become more essential as COVID-19 has shuttered bank branches, Crone said. ATMs lets consumers continue to withdraw cash and make other transactions.

“This will be a big move for NCR,” he said.

NCR CEO Michael Hayford said in a statement issued Monday that “Cardtronics’ debit network is highly complementary to NCR’s payments platform and will enable the combined company to seamlessly connect retail and bank customers.”

NCR did not respond to requests for additional comment. A Cardtronics spokesman referred questions to the company’s Jan. 7 news release.

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