- PNC Financial Services Group acquired Linga, a Naples, Florida-based point-of-sale (POS) and payments solutions firm for an undisclosed amount, the bank announced Monday.
- Linga, which launched in 2004, runs a cloud-based operating system specifically targeted toward the restaurant industry. Linga’s features include online ordering, payments, QR code-based menus and virtual kiosks, according to a press release.
- The deal comes as other banks, including JPMorgan Chase and Banc of California, are making large investments in the payments space.
The COVID-19 pandemic ushered in a greater demand for contactless payments options such as online ordering and QR codes — features Linga said it offers to clients in 48 countries.
PNC’s Linga deal reflects the bank’s commitment to expanding its corporate payments capabilities and investing in tools its clients need to run their businesses more effectively, Emma Loftus, executive vice president and head of PNC Treasury Management, said in a statement.
"Leveraging Linga's proprietary solutions and PNC's competitive treasury management platform, we will be able to provide our restaurant and retail clients with the tools they need to keep up with ever-changing consumer expectations,” she said.
As part of the deal, Linga will continue to manage its portfolio of channel partners and clients. Linga will retain its founder and CEO, Onur Haytac, its existing management team and U.S.- and Canada-based employees, and will continue to operate out of Naples and Toronto, according to a press release.
"As we've worked with PNC over the last several years, we've had incredible success with our combined payments capabilities and we look forward to continuing this strategic collaboration as we move forward together,” Haytac said in a statement.
PNC’s deal follows several other payments-related fintech acquisitions that banks have made to fill technology gaps.
“Financial services firms have grappled for years with the option of build-vs.-buy for emerging technologies, but with the rate of change accelerating across the payments space, many [financial institutions] are looking at the option to acquire,” Daniela Hawkins, a managing principal at consulting firm Capco said in an email.
Banc of California announced this month it acquired Santa Ana, California-based payment processing firm Deepstack Technologies for $24 million in a move aimed at positioning the bank closer to its clients and providing deeper insight into their business needs.
“There is a clear opportunity for a bank with the right technology to become a one-stop shop to simplify and streamline payments for businesses while providing faster access to funds and enhanced reporting capability,” Jared Wolff, the bank’s president and CEO, told analysts on a call discussing the deal.
JPMorgan Chase, a giant in the merchant services arena, announced its own bid for a payments-related firm this month. The world’s biggest provider of merchant services by transaction volume, according to the Nilson Report, plans to purchase payments startup Renovite in an effort to update the services it offers merchants for acquiring their card payments.
PNC is not alone in pushing into the restaurant-adjacent space. JPMorgan last September agreed to buy restaurant platform The Infatuation, which owns the Zagat guidebook and review brand.