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UK regulator approves Visa/Earthport deal

The Financial Conduct Authority approved Visa Inc.'s planned acquisition of Earthport Plc.

Visa and Mastercard Inc. were previously locked in a fight to acquire Earthport, a London-based company that uses blockchain to streamline payments across international markets. Visa in December 2018 offered to acquire Earthport for £198 million, which was trumped by Mastercard's higher offer of £233 million in January. Visa in February responded by increasing its offering price to £247 million.

Mastercard eventually dropped its plan to acquire Earthport in order to focus on its acquisition of Trans-Fast Remittance LLC. Visa then bought an additional 9.9% stake in Earthport and said it will extend its acquisition offer to April 30.