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Global Payments CEO: 'We are direct beneficiaries' of innovation

It’s been a very good year for Global Payments. The payment processing company on Thursday reported first-quarter profits of $1.34 per share, four cents above estimates and better than $1.13 per share a year ago.

Revenue was in line with estimates at $1.04 billion for the quarter ended March 2019, compared with revenues of $924.28 million in the year-ago quarter.

In an exclusive interview with Yahoo Finance’s The First Trade, Global Payments CEO Jeff Sloan attributed the growth to advancements in technology and the strength of the consumer.

"Think about the way people pay for things today — using their phone, going online, paying with your face [or] thumb,” Sloan said. “We are direct beneficiaries of all those innovations at Global Payments."

Shares of Global Payments were higher on the strong earnings results and are up 40% so far this year.

Payment processors have been under pressure to consolidate as they deal with increased competition from fintech upstarts, such as Square.

First-quarter results for Square were better than expected, but investors dumped the stock after the mobile payments company gave a disappointing sales and profit outlook for the second quarter.

Companies including Alipay, PayPal, and MasterCard are all vying for a piece of the payments industry, which is projected to surge to $2.4 trillion by 2027, according to a report from Boston Consulting Group and Swift.

Global Payments has been on a buying spree, acquiring at least two companies in the past six months. It currently operates in 32 countries and is about to enter Austria.

“We’ve never had a more full M&A pipeline than we do today,” says Sloan. “I’m bullish and optimistic on our business so I’m a buyer, I feel very good about our ability to continue to expand.”

Alexis Christoforous is a New York-based Anchor and Reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter at @AlexisTVNews

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