The convertible bonds agreement will create a partnership between SoftBank and Wirecard that aims to expand the German payment specialist's global network


Wirecard's Aschheim head office (Credit: Wirecard)

Japanese investment giant SoftBank has agreed to pump €900m (£779m) into German fintech company Wirecard as part of a digital payments strategic partnership.

The funding has been arranged via a convertible bond mechanism, by which Wirecard will issue five-year bonds to SoftBank, equating to almost seven million shares in the German company.

These shares are valued at €130 (£112) each, with the deal corresponding to a 5.6% stake in the digital payments specialist.

Wirecard CEO Markus Braun said: “As global innovators, we focus heavily on expanding our networks and creating opportunities for companies with ground-breaking ideas.

“In SoftBank, we have found a partner that shares both our passion for new technologies and drive to spearhead the latest innovations, all on a global scale.

“In addition, through this potential partnership, we will expand our reach and products to the East Asian markets, thereby further strengthening our position in Asia.”


SoftBank and Wirecard partnership will support the fintech’s Asian expansion

The investment from SoftBank is expected to support the German fintech’s expansion into Japanese and South Korean markets, as it looks to strengthen its presence in Asia.

softbank wirecard
Wirecard targets expansion into Japanese and South Korean markets

Wirecard will also benefit from collaboration opportunities within SoftBank’s extensive investment portfolio, with the venture capitalist having supported a wide range of growing and successful businesses operating in digital payments, data analytics, artificial intelligence and other innovative digital financial services.

A SoftBank spokesperson said: “Wirecard has a strong track record in pioneering innovation in digital payments, and has been at the forefront in reshaping modern consumer behaviours.

“We are excited to partner with the company, and see huge potential to deploy this technology at scale across new markets and sectors within SoftBank’s global technology portfolio.”

The partnership is further intended to include the development of new ideas for products and services in the digital lending space.


Wirecard specialises in global digital transactions

Founded in 1999 and based in Munich, Wirecard is a financial technology company specialising in the end-to-end process of electronic payments, from transaction processing to fraud prevention.

It operates across more than 200 international payment networks worldwide and 100 transaction currencies, serving 34,000 customers in various industries.

Wirecard share prices have bumped in the wake of the SoftBank partnership announcement, topping €137 (£118.45) at the time of writing.

The deal remains subject to the approval of Wirecard’s annual shareholders meeting, which will be held on 18 June.