Stripe, the American financial services, and software as a service company headquartered in San Francisco announced $600 million in funding which it said would be to expand its API-based payments services into more geographies. Today the company is is putting some of that money where their mouth is.
If you’re reading this, Stripe has acquired Paystack, a startup from Lagos, Nigeria, that is quite similar to Stripe. Paystack provides a quick way to integrate payment services into an online or offline transaction by way of an API.
There is enormous opportunity. In absolute numbers, Africa may be smaller right now than other regions, but online commerce will grow about 30% every year. And even with wider global declines, online shoppers are growing twice as fast. Stripe thinks on a longer time horizon than others because we are an infrastructure company. We are thinking of what the world will look like in 2040-2050. .said Patrick Collison, Stripe’s co-founder and CEO, in an interview with TechCrunch
According to Tech Crunch, Paystack currently has around 60,000 customers, including small businesses, larger corporates, fintech, educational institutions, and online betting companies, and the plan will be for it to continue operating independently, the companies said. That makes this the biggest startup acquisition to date to come out of Nigeria, as well as Stripe’s biggest acquisition to date anywhere. It’s also a notable shift in Stripe’s strategy as it continues to mature: typically, it has only acquired smaller companies to expand its technology stack, rather than its global footprint.
Paystack had been on Stripe’s radar for some time prior to acquiring it. Like its US counterpart, the Nigerian startup went through Y Combinator — that was in 2016, and it was actually the first-ever startup out of Nigeria to get into the world-famous incubator.
Paystack was not for sale when Stripe approached us. For us, it’s about the mission. I’m driven by the mission to accelerate payments on the continent, and I am convinced that Stripe will help us get there faster. It is a very natural move.said Akinlade, who co-founded the company with Ezra Olubi (who is the CTO).
This a really huge win for the Nigerian tech scene.