Welch ATM in Chesterfield has been purchased for $160 million in cash by Cardtronics Inc. of Houston, the world’s largest ATM owner and operator. Jeff Hewitt, Welch ATM’s founder and CEO, will be an executive vice president for Cardtronics.
Rock Island Capital of Peoria, Ill., bought Welch ATM in 2010 and put it up for sale earlier this year, and Hewitt remained a significant shareholder. Welch ATM’s growth was explosive, with more than 26,000 ATMs in all 50 states, up from 5,600 ATMs in 2011. Revenue grew to $100 million in 2013 from $41 million in 2011.
Hewitt has a degree in finance and accounting from the University of Missouri, but he says “my grades weren’t good enough to get hired by a big accounting firm.”