On the heels of Visa‘s acquisition of data aggregator Plaid for $5.3 billion, industry watchers are questioning whether this might prompt wealth management tech firm Envestnet to sell aggregator Yodlee, which it acquired in 2015 for $590 million.
The speculation was initially raised by Raymond James analysts in a report released Jan. 14, a day after Visa’s Plaid acquisition. They noted that “Envestnet’s board of directors may potentially look at the rich valuation Visa is paying for Plaid and conclude that a sale of Yodlee is in Envestnet’s shareholders’ best interest.”
Meanwhile, a Barron’s report from last week noted that potential buyers could include Mastercard, PayPal and Ant Financial, but none of these claims were substantiated. At issue is whether Yodlee can ride what one report called a “halo effect” of Visa’s acquisition of Plaid, but there are challenges, including the aftermath of a letter from three members of Congress who called on the Federal Trade Commission to investigate concerns Yodlee may be selling consumers’ financial data without their consent.
According to the Raymond James report, a shift from Envestnet being the owner of Yodlee to a client of Yodlee would result in “minimal disruption” to Envestnet’s financial adviser client base.
Envestnet board members contacted by Bank Innovation did not respond to requests for comment. Meanwhile, Envestnet, in a statement, said it would not comment on rumors.
“As a matter of corporate policy, we do not comment on rumor or speculation in the market,” a spokesperson on behalf of the company said.
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