Monday, 22 October, 2018

PayPal acquires Swedish payments startup iZettle

PayPal buys Swedish start-up iZettle for $2.2bn in its biggest ever deal PayPal in talks to buy Swedish small-business platform iZettle for $2.2 billion
Lloyd Bates | 18 May, 2018, 17:29

"Combining our assets and expertise with a global industry leader like PayPal allows us to deliver even more value to small businesses to help them succeed in a world of giants", said De Geer. "iZettle and PayPal are a strategic fit, with a shared mission, values and culture - and complementary product offerings and geographies".

The deal also sets PayPal on a collision course with Twitter founder Jack Dorsey's e-payments platform, Square, which offers a similar platform that lets small businesses accept card payments by plugging a card reader into their smartphones.

Based in Sweden, iZettle has built a presence in Europe and South America that will allow PayPal to bring its platform to almost 500,000 stores in 11 new countries including France, Germany, Brazil and Mexico. Other iZettle officials will stay on, as the company is going to become a "center of excellence" for in-store and offline payments in Europe, according to PayPal.

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Based in Stockholm, iZettle was founded in April 2010 by Magnus Nilsson and Jacob de Geer, with the company de Geer's fourth start-up.

At close, PayPal will get in-store capabilities in 11 markets, including Brazil, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain and Sweden. The $2.2 billion price tag will certainly make this one of the biggest European deals, though PayPal has still not detailed how much of that figure is cash or stock, or whether it includes assumptions of iZettle's existing debts. It had advanced plans to go public. The company is expected to process payments worth $ 6 billion in 2018 and generate $ 165 million in gross revenue. This is not the first time PayPal acquires startups with brilliant tech, but in this case, iZettle would have become a potential rival, had it raised enough funds via IPO. The San Francisco-based company continues to operate today as a standalone service within PayPal.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. was sole financial adviser to iZettle, while PayPal worked with Evercore Inc. J.P. Morgan Securities plc is acting as sole financial adviser to iZettle, while Gernandt & Danielsson is acting as its legal adviser.

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