Executives at US-based remittance giant MoneyGram began assessing a potential sale of the business, Reuters reported, a year after a $1.2 billion acquisition attempt by Ant Financial collapsed.

After Ant Financial’s move fell through, MoneyGram’s share price plummeted and only started a recovery last week on rumours of a renewed attempt to sell the company.

MoneyGram holds a significant debt pile. As of end-September 2018 its net debt was $903 million, with the company midway through a digital transformation project designed to slash its costs.

In November 2018, it was also hit with a $125 million bill from the US Federal Trade Commission to settle a case related to failing to take adequate steps to prevent fraudulent transactions.

Failed attempt
MoneyGram’s previous attempt to sell was scuppered by regulatory issues in January 2018.

Alipay-parent Ant Financial won a fierce bidding war against ATM company Euronet during 2017 to have its offer accepted, only for the deal to become one of the first casualties of escalating trade tensions between the US and China.

After failing to receive clearance from the US overseas investment authorities Ant Financial walked away from the deal.