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LONDON, Aug 8 (Reuters) - British payments firm Worldpay said on Tuesday the deadline for its long-awaited deal with U.S. suitor Vantiv has been pushed back four days because the two companies need more time to reach a final agreement.
Cincinnati-based Vantiv, which agreed last month to buy Worldpay, a former division of Royal Bank of Scotland, for 7.7 billion pounds ($10 billion), now has until Aug. 11 to make a firm bid or walk away for six months.
This is the second time the deadline has been renegotiated as the two companies haggle over the terms of their deal, including the protection of British jobs and employees, sources close to the matter told Reuters.
This new deadline could be pushed back further, however, if Britain's Takeover Panel, which governs mergers and acquisition (M&A) activity in the country, approves another delay.
If successful, the deal would be the latest takeover in a fast changing industry where consumers are making more purchases online and payments companies face fresh competition from newcomers trying to change the way merchants get paid.
Worldpay recently lost the head of its British division, Peter Jackson, who is leaving the London-based company to become CEO of gambling firm Paddy Power Betfair.
Worldpay said "positive discussions" were continuing with Vantiv. Its advisory team now includes Barclays which has been added to work on the deal alongside Goldman Sachs .
Vantiv has brought in Credit Suisse which is now helping Morgan Stanley, the U.S. bank that used to own the payments firm.
Worldpay also said its half-year results for the period ended June 30 would now be released on Wednesday in conjunction with Vantiv's second-quarter results, a day later than planned.
Both companies were spun out of their banks after the financial crisis and thrived on their home turf but are now part of a wave of payments company mergers around the world.
British firm Paysafe Group has backed a 3 billion pound takeover offer from a consortium of funds managed by Blackstone and CVC Capital Partners while London-based buyout fund Permira has taken a stake in payments firm Klarna, one of Europe's most highly valued tech startups.
Danish payment services firm Nets A/S has been approached by potential buyers in what could be another sizeable deal and French payments specialist Ingenico joined the rush with a 1.5 billion euro swoop on Swedish rival Bambora. ($1 = 0.7666 pounds) (Reporting by Pamela Barbaglia; editing by David Clarke)