PREGO`S YEAR END NEWSLETTER
We are pleased to issue our year end 2017 investor newsletter. In it, you’ll find information about the ongoing progress on market development, technology development, corporate and financial development, general company updates, and the future trends and high level plans in aligning Prego as a trusted payment and e-money provider across South East Asia, Europe, and other global markets.
In general, 2017 has been a year with strong focus on completing the re-domicile process by formally moving Prego`s HQ operation and incorporation to Norway, and securing new suppliers and technology partners. Alongside this, we have continued to focus on top line growth with contracting of new customers in the Nordic and South East Asian market.
Prego has seven signed business purchase contracts active, which includes a total of 450 000 user accounts for delivery throughout 2018 and up to end 2020. The current base of issued Pay2Go cards is close to 15.000 accounts. We expect a faster roll out in 2018 as we have switched our card issuing to two new issuing banks, with better flexibility and delivery terms for ourselves and the end-users. The roll-out of new services will start in mid Q1-2018, with delivery on already signed purchased order portfolio.
Prego as a group has per 30.9.17 operating revenues of 2.344 000 USD with a profit of 1.469 000 USD. This is basically in line with projections for the full year. The operating revenues is 50% proforma invoiced, based on signed contracts and 100% payable on delivery. The revenue and profit expectations for 2018 is in line with our projections, but will be subject to cash injections from investors throughout 2018, which means faster volume growth as fully funded or slower organic growth, with less investor capital injections.
GROUP RESTRUCTURE PROCESS AND RE-DOMICILE OF BUSINESS
Prego`s general business has been transferred from Guernsey and is now formally domiciled with Group HQ to Norway, following our plan to avoid NOKUS/CFC status for the company and shareholders. The new Group structure is operated under Prego International Group AS, a Norwegian incorporated company. All registered shareholders in PIL is currently in a process of being transferred into the new structure, after a previously announced consolidation of all PIL shares on 1:10.
All shares in Prego International Group AS will be electronically registered and managed under the authorized Norwegian Securities Depository - Aksjeservice AS, our share registrar in Norway. The final completion of the process is scheduled to January 10th. 2018. Detailed information to individual shareholders will be sent from our share registrar in mid-January 2018.
Prego International Group AS (PIG) has per October 1st. 2017 acquired 100% of the shares in Prego International Limited (PIL) operating subsidiaries, through a joint approved transaction with the Board of Directors of PIL and PIG, and each subsidiary company Board of Directors. This include all company assets. Group operations and management continues under Prego International Group AS, with Management and Board supervision from Norway. This exercise has been critical to secure and continue future operations of Prego as a group. PIL and PIG has secured majority shareholder and creditors consent for this transaction.
MARKET OUTLOOK – 2018 AND ON WARDS
Accenture Group estimates that bringing unbanked adults and businesses into the formal financial system could generate about $380 billion in new revenues for the sector. The majority of this population are found in low- and middle-income emerging markets. And even in high-income countries, large numbers of people do not use banks to help meet their day-to-day financial needs.
More than two billion people around the world, roughly more than a third of the world’s adult population, lack access to formal financial services. Unable to save, borrow, or invest money or protect themselves from financial risk, they are denied the fundamentals of economic empowerment.
THE OPPORTUNITY IS NOW
With global income levels growing, financial inclusion is now on the agenda for public and private financial institutions. The time is right for emerging fin-tech companies to address the unbanked and underserved market, by changing current operating models and customer offerings, to effectively service this fast-growing, lucrative segment.
Social impact and commercial growth reinforce each other, and financial inclusion depends on how they come together. Because every player offers unique strengths. By harnessing these mutually beneficial strengths – from financial players, telecommunications providers, NGOs and government institutions – financial inclusion can become a reality.
Prego is at the heart of this process.
NEW TECHNOLOGIES AND DISRUPTIVE BUSINESS MODELS
2018 will be a game changing year for the global banking and financial sector. This mainly as a result of financial authorities implementation of new regulations, changing more over to “open banking” and fin-tech companies will be more integrated in the customer interface through niche technologies and simplified solutions. Block chain technology and crypto currencies as BitCoin, Ethereum, LiteCoin and other similar currencies has a rising volume as an alternative to the traditional global banking and payment concepts.
Cross-sector partnerships are at the heart of financial inclusion. Development organizations see the power of connecting their on-the-ground knowledge to private sector skills. Banks want to expand into new markets while making a positive social impact. Fintech and associated digital technologies enable new business models and affordable, breakthrough access. When these interest and issues converge, true transformation happens.
PREGO INTERNATIONAL GROUP AS - IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Prego with our upcoming digital banking concept Everyday Future Bank, will have a framework built on the new future technologies with current conventional product and services built in as components. The Board of Directors has an aim to bring Prego`s user services in the forefront of the market development and deliver customer values in a strong combination of decentralized technology and a very effective global distribution model. (The Everyday Global Node Network)
GLOBAL PARTNERS AND SUPPLIERS
During this fall, Prego has migrated our payment cards and e-money services over to a new supplier platform, which will provide more product offerings to the market, and better and more flexible services for our customers, especially in the South East Asian region, which is a more complicated market for us. This migration is a part of our long-term plan, and this is supported by MasterCard International and other key business partners. Prego will still maintain a strong business relation to MasterCard and VISA International, along with other suppliers which has been signed up.
FUNDRAISING AND CAPITAL PROCESSES
Prego is currently in a final” closing process” of raising 20 million USD from a Middle East based investor group. These funds will be allocated as working capital and will enable Prego to kick-start many planned initiatives in our operation and expansion. We expect to have all details in place shortly. A finalization of the committed fundraise process, is subject to a completion of the ongoing restructure of the group, which scheduled to happen shortly.
The new allocated funds will also enable us to start and complete a planned listing application process. Further information about this will be announced in due course.
Prego has through the late summer and fall of 2017 been approached by a few major global payment providers, well known in the industry with a confirmed interest to make a potential significant strategic investment in our group. Several meetings have been held, and there is established a good dialogue for further discussions. The name of the groups is under confidentiality, but further updates will be announced in due course, when opened for public.
SHAREHOLDERS AND INVESTOR RELATIONS
Prego will organize to open for shareholders a 2nd hand market for PIG shares to be offered and traded. This will be organized through our share registrar Aksjeservice AS, who will also include access to a new online shareholder registry. We expect the 2nd. trade market to take place in Q1-2018.
Our current Facebook shareholder portal, which was enabled as a test project, will be closed on January 3rd. 2018, and replaced by a web based professional Investor Relation portal, developed and operated by Crowd Works AS. Our new Investor Relation service will be operative from mid-January through www.pregogroup.com/investorrelations. Each individual shareholder will be invited with access details.
As a consequence of the Group restructure, the Guernsey companies which is no longer trading will be filed for struck off in 2018, and closed. All future business for Prego is now operated under Prego International Group AS.
Prego International Group AS will arrange a shareholder information meeting in late February or early March 2018. This meeting will include a formal AGM process for PIL for 2016 and 2017. The meeting will be announced to shareholders through web investor information notice 14 days ahead of the coming meeting date.
As a part of the shareholder meeting, Prego International Group AS will introduce and present new appointed Non-Executive Directors and other staff appointments for the group.
We look forward to provide further updates on our business, continuing with newsletters, and other key information’s through our new upcoming investor relations portal.
We wish all our customers, partners, suppliers, investors, shareholders and staff a Happy New Year and a prosperous 2018.
Oslo, December 31st. 2017.
For PREGO International Group
Ronald Aldor Eriksen, Executive Chairman
Roy Jacobsen, CEO