A wave of new rules following the global financial crisis "plays right into our hands", according to the chief executive of credit services group Experian as the company announces a $30 million joint venture into the Australian market.
The FTSE 100 company unveiled a 13 per cent rise in annual pre-tax profits this week. It is best known for carrying our consumer credit checks for banks and retailers. The owner of 16 credit bureaus around the world, Experian maintains information on more than 500 million consumers and uses that information to assist companies with risk evaluation.
Now the longstanding client of law firm Allens Arthur Robinson is establishing a new credit provider service in Australia.
The new $30 million joint venture introduces a new player into the market, Experian Australia Credit Services Pty Ltd.
Mallesons Stephen Jaques acted for the banks.
The joint venture with six major banks, including Citibank and GE Capital, will be majority-owned by Experian. It will provide consumer and business credit information to credit providers in Australia, but will need to gain regulatory approval in order to do so.
Allens Arthur Robinson partner Niranjan Arasaratnam led the Allens team, which advised Experian on shareholder arrangements, data supply agreements, competition issues, privacy regulation and ancillary agreements.
"The joint venture will increase competition in the marketplace and improve transparency for businesses and consumers,"Arasaratnam said.
"We were pleased to assist Experian, whose global experience with credit bureaus will benefit Australia's financial services industry.
'Allens has previously worked with Experian in Asia and we look forward to assisting them in the future.'
Assisting Arasaratnam, who is based in Melbourne, is David Brewster (partner, Melbourne), Victoria Wark (senior associate, Melbourne), Larissa Macpherson (senior associate, Melbourne), Alexander Gelis (senior associate, Melbourne) and Margaret Walsh (lawyer, Melbourne).