Intuit sells off its financial services business unit

Jul 1st, 2013 | Posted by

Big news today from Intuit, as it sells off its financial services business unit (formerly known as Digital Insight) to Thoma Bravo. The press release points to most assets being sold, though interestingly Intuit will hold on to Mint.com and a connectivity piece:

The transaction includes an Internet banking platform, digital payments, mobile banking, Purchase Rewards, FinanceWorks, and digital banking add-on solutions as well as third-party solutions. Certain assets that are currently included in the IFS division, including OFX connectivity and Mint.com, will remain with Intuit.

There has been a flurry of transactions lately that involve online banking players:

  • ACI picked up S1 and Online Resources
  • GTCR acquired Fundtech
  • Bottomline Technologies purchased Intuit’s small business online banking assets
  • Fiserv acquired Open Solutions

This is clearly a volatile space, and the high level of activity isn’t necessarily indicative of opportunity or demise.  Each of these deals is quite different. In Celent’s opinion the ACI and Fiserv acquisitions are primarily about land grab and market share. Bottomline’s acquisition is more strategic and about building out their business. Fundtech and Intuit Financial Services were both sold to private equity firms. Intuit’s bank clients will certainly feel uneasy about what the future holds and will have plenty of questions. Questions will include, will there be continued investment in popular mobile and online banking solutions? Should I consider switching to another provider? When will the private equity firm decide to exit the business it just acquired?

I have a few unanswered questions that I am going to speak to Intuit about:

  • What happens to the newly announced mint.com for banks? Intuit is hanging on to Mint but selling the online banking piece, so this is unclear.
  • What are the implications for present online and mobile banking customers?
  • Is Intuit going to be a friend or foe to banks? They used to play both sides, but with the sale of IFS it appears that they are going to be competing with or complementary to banks.
  • What is Thoma Bravo’s 12-24 month plan for IFS?

This is a newly announced deal, stay tuned for more info. Feel free to weigh in if you have thoughts or comments.