South African FinTech, Net1 Acquires Additional 5% in Bank Frick to Expand Blockchain Development Group


Net 1 UEPS Technologies, Inc, Net1 has announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire a 5% additional interest in Bank Frick & Co. AG (“Bank Frick”), a fully licensed bank based in Balzers, Liechtenstein. Following the successful completion of this investment, the Company will own 35% of Bank Frick. The Company has an option, exercisable until October 2, 2019, to acquire an additional 35% interest in Bank Frick.

Bank Frick was the first bank in the CHF area to offer a cryptocurrency certificate in the summer of 2017, allowing professional investors to add cryptocurrencies to their portfolios. Bank Frick also supports and assists a large number of companies with their initial coin offerings (“ICOs”), in compliance with the strict European legislation regarding customer identification know your client (KYC), anti-money laundering (AML), source of money and other related legislation.

Net1 acquired its 5% interest from the Kuno Frick Family Foundation at a premium, and this premium will be reinvested in the bank in order to establish and accelerate the expansion of a dedicated team focused on the development and various applications of blockchain technology.

“Our further investment in Bank Frick emphasizes the importance of our involvement with the Bank, and the multiple synergies between our two organizations,” said Herman G. Kotzé, CEO of Net1. Bank Frick is progressive and has developed a range of exciting business models and products in the areas of payment, cryptocurrency trading and blockchain applications, and its pipeline of new products and services is growing. With blockchain in particular, we see interesting opportunities to make attractive products available for people in countries with a low concentration of banks,” he concluded.

“As part of our agreed digital strategy, we are striving to combine the reliability of the classic banking system with the new opportunities offered by digitization and blockchain technology,” said Edi Wögerer, CEO of Bank Frick. “Net1’s additional involvement serves to meaningfully strengthen our digital strategy,” he added.