A group of investors headed by private equity firm Francisco Partners has agreed to buy payments technology company Verifone Systems Inc. for around $3.4B.
Founded in 1981, Verifone paved the way for point-of-sale card readers, bringing check books to extinction and becoming a key staple in the payments universe.
But unfortunately, as technology progressed, the widely successful visionary became the symbol for all things going the way of the dinosaur.
The trailblazer is always the first to fall
Verifone has struggled with slumping US sales, and their once-ingenious idea of putting card readers in the back of taxi cabs has all but gone away with the rise of ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft (they sold their taxi operations for $30m in December).
But, above all, the company has struggled to keep up with newer, sexier competitors like Square that offer better software and more transparent pricing.
It’s been a real landslide
According to CNBC, Verifone’s stock has fallen about 70% from its peak in 2011. Last year, the company reported a net loss of $174m, a HUGE jump from the previous year’s $9m loss.
But, there’s a bright side — a very dim bright side, but a bright side nonetheless — Verifone shares have skyrocketed more than 50% since the acquisition announcement.
When asked if they used Verifone’s outdated payment technology to make the transaction, a Francisco spokesperson told us to “eat sh*t.”