EML Payments halts trading over Central Bank of Ireland probe

EML Payments, an Australian fintech with a history of European acquisitions, has halted the trading of its shares on the Australian Stock Exchange over compliance concerns.

Ireland’s central bank has flagged concerns about PFS

The Central Bank of Ireland has raised “significant regulatory concerns” over the company’s subsidiary, Prepaid Financial Services (PFS).

EML writes in a statement that it has halted trading to keep the market orderly, with the suspension in place until further notice.

The firm says more details are on the way prior to the opening of the market on 19 May.

EML acquired PFS in March 2020. It bought 100% of the firm’s share capital in a deal valued at $290 million.

The Australian firm’s CEO, Tom Cregan, said the deal was part of an ongoing ambition to be “one of the largest fintech enablers” globally.

Founded in 2008, PFS is led by husband and wife Noel and Valerie Moran. The firm employs around 200 people in Ireland.

In March it was one of a trio of firms to admit to breaching UK competition rules. It settled with the Payment Systems Regulator (PSR), alongside Mastercard and Allpay, to the tune of £920,000.

The three firms had agreed not to attempt to poach clients off one another in the welfare payments sector.

EML Payments has also recently acquired Sentenial and open banking brand Nuapay in a €110 million deal.

Related: Bank of Ireland COO: “Inside every bank there’s a tech company”

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