Credit card provider SAV sold for £472m

INVESTMENT manager Värde Partners has snapped up credit card provider SAV from its consortium of backers in a £472m deal.

SAV, which manages about 500,000 credit card accounts with more than £600m in assets, had been majority owned by Palamon Capital Partners, Electra Private Equity and Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners.

Minnesota-based Värde wants to expand its consumer finance investments from Europe.

SAV has been on the acquisition trail over the last four years, buying credit card businesses from HSBC and Citigroup.

It bid unsuccessfully for the Egg online bank last year.

David Symondson, deputy managing partner of Electra, said of the deal: “This is a perfect example of crisis breeding opportunity: for SAV it was finding investors willing to support and fund the growth of a non-standard credit card business during one of the most challenging operating environments we have seen.”

Kent-based SAV was set up 10 years ago to cater for consumers overlooked by the major card companies. Its clients have included Lloyds Banking Group and First Data.