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Moneysupermarket acquires Quidco for £101m

Moneysupermarket acquires Quidco for £101m
The online price comparison website said on Tuesday that the move falls in line with its expansion plans, and long-term goals of helping households to save money. Photo: Newscast/Universal Images Group via Getty (Newscast via Getty Images)

Moneysupermarket (MONY.L) has snapped up Maple Syrup Media, which trades as Quidco, for £101m ($139m).

The online price comparison website said on Tuesday that the move falls in line with its expansion plans, and long-term goals of helping households to save money.

The debt-free, cash-free deal consists of an initial sum of £87m, with a further deferred £14m, and follows Moneysupermarket’s takeover of Decision Tech in 2018.

Quidco is the second largest cash back business in the UK with around 1 million transacting users. It offers cashback at around 4,500 merchants including retail, travel and switching services.


“The group will benefit from adding a broad and leading cashback offer, providing an additional way for our users to save on even more products and services,” Moneysupermarket said.

Watch: How to save money on a low income

Sheffield-based Quidco delivered revenue of £59.2m for the year ending 31 July, with adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, growing year-on-year to £7.9m. Its users earned cashback on average 11 times in the last financial year.

“Moneysupermarket Group exists to help households save money. Today we've added a broad and compelling cashback offer,” Peter Duffy, CEO of Moneysupermarket Group, said.

“We have experience of bringing complementary businesses into the Group and helping them thrive while sharing their capabilities more widely. Our growing stable of well-known and trusted consumer brands will provide households with an even more compelling savings offer.”

Read more: European markets sluggish as traders keep eyes on rising inflation and interest rates

The deal is unconditional and is expected to complete on 1 November 2021.

Separately in a trading update, Moneysupermarket revealed that it expects full-year profit to be in line with current expectations. However, it did warn that energy market conditions were unlikely to improve this year, meaning it expects switching to be “negligible” in the fourth quarter.

Last year, it accounted for 16% of group revenue in the last three months of the financial year.

Revenue in the three months to the end of September dropped by a tenth to £76m, with insurance and home services down 10% and 46% respectively. Money and travel both managed to climb 58% and 29%.

MoneySuperMarket. Chart: Yahoo Finance UK
Moneysupermarket shares were as much as 7.8% higher on Tuesday. Chart: Yahoo Finance UK (Yahoo Finance UK)

“The current energy crisis means there are very few attractive deals for people looking to change their heating and power supplier and the failure of smaller operators has left people loath to move anyway,” said AJ Bell financial analyst Danni Hewson.

“This is a problem which isn’t going away for Moneysupermarket but the good news is it is pretty heavily diversified across different sectors and there was a notable recovery in the travel insurance space after a heavily disrupted 2020.

Shares were as much as 7.8% higher on the back of the news, making it the biggest climber on the FTSE 250.

Watch: Should I pay off debt or save money during the coronavirus pandemic?