Payments processing company Fiserv told analysts during a conference call Wednesday that it lost a "large processing client" during the third quarter, but downplayed the revenue impact.
Fiserv didn't name the client, but analysts who follow the company later said they suspected it was Stripe, the big digital payments company with dual headquarters in Dublin and San Francisco that earlier this year was valued at $95 billion.
Asked about the identity of the client, a spokesperson for Fiserv said: "We’ll decline to elaborate beyond the comments made on the earnings call." Stripe didn't respond to a request for comment.
Brookfield, Wisconsin-based Fiserv said the client that left the fold had been processing transactions as part of a joint venture that mainly impacted its North American business. The client's exit mainly took a toll on processing e-commerce transactions through Fiserv, the company's third-quarter report showed.
Analysts estimated a 5% impact to the company's overall processing volumes and a bigger impact on its e-commerce segment volume, though less of a hit to revenue.
"It has very little impact overall on the actual revenue and the revenue numbers you see there are as reported," Fiserv Chief Financial Officer Robert Hau said in a response to an analyst question. "That client is largely off our platform at this point," as of the end of the third quarter, he added.
In talking about the client during the call, Fiserv CEO Frank Bisignano said the departure "was long telegraphed by the client" and "never saw (it) as a real economic impact, really just a volume impact to our business."
Still, analysts said the loss might hurt Fiserv's stock price, which plunged 10 percent Wednesday after the company reported disappointing quarterly earnings. The shares continued their sell-off Thursday.
'We worry that the slowdown in e-comm volumes, which we estimate was due to Stripe going in-house (vs. via the WFC JV) may weigh on (investors') sentiment," Mizuho Americas analysts said in a report Wednesday. "We note that while volume impact is more meaningful, the actual drag on revenue is marginal amid low take rates for that revenue stream."