Online shopping rewards platform Cashrewards (ASX:CRW) is set to be bought by ANZ Bank’s innovation and investment arm 1835i, receiving a takeover offer at $1.135 per share.

The board backed the deal – alongside it’s largest shareholder Alium Capital – and said it was excited for the next phase of development.

“The proposed transaction is an endorsement of the quality of Cashrewards offering for members and merchants and will further advance our position as the leader in Australian cashback,” said CEO Bernard Wilson.

“It provides an opportunity for our shareholders to realise a significant premium to the prevailing trading price of Cashrewards shares.”

Wilson is indeed correct, the deal is a 19.5% premium to its closing price yesterday and 30.2% premium to its 30-day Volume Weighted Average Price.

However, it is a discount of nearly 35% to the $1.73 price it listed at only last December.

Cashrewards is the second company from the IPO class of 2020 to get a takeover bid with Youfoodz (ASX:YFZ). Youfoodz too got an offer at hefty discount to its IPO price.

While Cashrewards shares have underwhelmed since listing, they did rise this morning to match the takeover offer.

Cashrewards (ASX:CRW) share price chart


Why would 1835i takeover Cashrewards?

1835i was arguably a predictable candidate to takeover Cashrewards.

It was already a 19 per cent shareholder, having bought almost $26 million in shares at IPO and had retained it up to this day.

Cashrewards sat alongside other investee companies including Airwallex, Slyp, DiviPay and Valiant Finance.

In early July, it strengthened its partnership by enabling its 4.7 million consumer credit and debit card holders to use its platform.

At the time, Emma Gray – ANZ’s Group Executive for Data and Automation – said the partnership would help the bank engage in more personalised conversations with customers.

Cashrewards had promised an update on the program upon the release of its cash flow and activities report for the September quarter.

Commenting on behalf of 1835i was its boss Ron Spector who simply said,” We are excited to enter into an Implementation Deed with Cashrewards to support the company during the next phase of its development.”