The 21-year-old firm isn’t a startup, and despite its name it isn’t playing in the private space travel game. Earthport is a cross-border payments network. It uses a cloud-based setup to help banks and other financial firms transmit payments for their own customers as an alternative to Swift.
On Friday morning, Mastercard offered 33 pence per share for Earthport in a deal that values the firm at 233 million pounds ($307 million). That bested an offer Visa’s international arm made on Dec. 27 at a 300 percent premium to the firm’s undisturbed share price. Earthport’s board deemed the Mastercard offer "compelling."