JPMorgan Chase & Co. has agreed to buy payments company WePay Inc. in the bank’s first sizable acquisition of a financial-technology startup, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Following the deal, JPMorgan plans to roll out WePay’s technology to four million small-business customers, the report said, citing Matt Kane, CEO of Chase Merchant Services.
WePay, which has roughly 200 employees and is based in Redwood City, California, helps online marketplaces and crowdfunding websites like GoFundMe process payments.
The two companies did not disclose terms of the deal, but a source told the Journal that the price was above the roughly US$220 million valuation that WePay achieved in a 2015 fundraising.
The growing popularity of e-commerce and mobile shopping has fueled deal making in the payments sector of late.
Even though JPMorgan hasn’t made many large acquisitions of fintech companies, it has been an active investor in startups there.
Over the past 12 months, the bank participated in a US$100 million fundraising for business-to-business payments firm Bill.com and a US$50 million fundraising for LevelUp, which enables customers to pay at restaurants and coffee shops using their smartphones, the Journal noted.
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