LAS VEGAS — Fifth Third Processing Solutions LLC is considering several expansion strategies.
The Cincinnati processor hopes to double in size over the next five to 10 years, Chris Pike, a managing director at the Boston investment firm Advent International Corp., said Tuesday in an interview at the Electronic Transactions Association conference in Las Vegas. Fifth Third Processing is a joint venture that was formed in July when Fifth Third Bancorp sold a 51% stake in its merchant processing unit to Advent.
Fifth Third Processing has approximately 170,000 merchant clients. It is considering an expanded role for the banks that refer their merchant customers to it for card processing services.
It is also looking for ways to work with software developers and point of sale terminal makers so they include Fifth Third Processing's services in their products.
Another option, Pike said, is creating a reseller program for independent sales organizations to add more small and midsize merchants, segments that are not well represented in its merchant portfolio.
Fifth Third Processing could use any combination of these tactics, and it is "looking hard now" at all of them, with an ISO program near the top of the list, he said; Fifth Third Processing historically has done little with such organizations.
It could also target additional payment services, such as prepaid cards, Pike said. The processor is not strong in card-not-present or international transactions, two areas where it might pursue additional opportunities, he said.
Advent also might make more acquisitions, possibly including merchants, Pike said.
Just as Advent has growth plans for the processor, Fifth Third Bancorp also wants it to grow, Pike said.
"There's still a lot of growth to come, and we hope to be a part of that," he said.