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Grab from Singapore suspends partnership with struggling Wirecard




FILE PHOTO: The head office of Wirecard AG, an independent provider of outsourcing and white label solutions for electronic payment transactions, is seen in Aschheim near Munich, Germany, on April 25, 2019. REUTERS / Michael Dalder

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Southeast Asia payment transfer and payment company Grab said it had suspended a scandal partnership with Wirecard a few days after the German payment company revealed a $ 2.1 billion financial hole that threatened its future.

“We have not started trade integration work on the Wirecard partnership and we are suspending the partnership until further notice,” a Grab spokesperson told Reuters on Wednesday in response to a question about the state. of partnership.

The two companies signed a payment agreement in March under which Wirecard was to process transactions made through the GrabPay electronic wallet, starting with the markets in Malaysia, the Philippines and Singapore.

Wirecard had not started processing payments or registering merchants in the name of Grab, the most valuable start-up in Southeast Asia, whose electronic wallet is accepted by more than 600,000 merchants and small businesses of the region.

Responding to a request, the Monetary Authority of Singapore said on Tuesday that it had asked Wirecard to ensure that it retains client funds from its local operations in the country’s banks.

This week, the former boss of Wirecard was arrested on suspicion of falsifying his accounts after the payment firm revealed the financial hole and wondered if the trustees had actually held the money on his behalf.

The German financial regulator also filed a new complaint against Wirecard with the prosecutor, claiming that the company’s late admission that billions were missing showed that it had misreported its financial situation between 2016 and 2018.

Report by Anshuman Daga and Aradhana Aravindan; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Emelia Sithole-Matarise

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