Plaid’s software connects companies to customers’ financial accounts. The transaction, which Visa expects to close within the next three to six months, will be paid for in cash on hand and debt issuance. (The Logic)
Talking point: For Visa, this is both a way to make money off the growing popularity of non-card payments and part of a broader competition with Mastercard. Visa’s scale can help Plaid, which already counts Venmo and Robinhood as clients, reach more customers. It will also help Visa access the increasingly popular fintech market. As Visa highlighted in its announcement, 75 per cent of people with internet used a fintech application to move money in 2019, up from 18 per cent in 2015. The deal represents a doubling of Plaid’s US$2.65-billion valuation during a 2018 funding round, in which both Visa and Mastercard participated. Visa beat out Mastercard to acquire cross-border payment firm Earthport last year. In 2017, Mastercard purchased Vocalink, which facilitates payments between bank accounts.