London-listed information-services company Experian has agreed to acquire Techno Park born and based credit bureau Compuscan and its data analytics partner Scoresharp for a cash consideration of R3.7 billion ($263 million).

Established in South Africa in 1994, Compuscan started as a credit bureau that enabled micro lenders to avoid financial loss by identifying clients’ repayment probability before issuing a loan. In 2011, Compuscan merged with ScoreSharp, a specialist credit-risk management consultancy with great strengths in data analytics. In 2014, the private equity firm Actis acquired the majority shareholding in Compuscan and Scoresharp to become part of the CHS Group. CHS offers credit-information, decision-analytics, marketing as well as loyalty/rewards services across nine countries (South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique, Lesotho, Ethiopia and Uganda, as well as in the Philippines and Australia).

Experian’s CEO, Brian Cassin, expressed his delight in the acquisition by stating: “Millions of people across Africa need access to financial services. By combining forces with Compuscan, we will be better positioned to serve the people and businesses of this region and be an enabler of growth in consumer and business credit, identity management and financial inclusion.”

Remo Lenisa, CEO of Compuscan, had the following to say: “By combining Compuscan and Scoresharp with Experian, we will be able to enhance our products and services to our customers to better manage risk, help borrowers gain access to finance and help reduce over indebtedness. I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank Actis for the support they have provided us over the last four years. They have been a fantastic value-adding partner bringing local presence, industry expertise and a shared vision for Compuscan. A special thank you to Michael Jordaan who has been chairman of our board over this time.”

Ali Mazanderani, partner at Actis, said: “When we joined forces with Compuscan and ScoreSharp, we knew that we were backing an exceptional team with an aligned ambition. We are extremely proud of what has been achieved together, it has been a wonderful journey. Our thanks to Remo Lenisa, the CEO of Compuscan, to Pieter Van Heerden the CEO of ScoreSharp, to Michael Jordaan, the Chairman of CSH, and to the whole CSH team”.

The transaction, which is still subject to review by the South African competition regulator, is expected to be complete during the first quarter of financial year ending March 2020.

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