J.P. Morgan Buys Payment Startup WePay as It Kicks Off Fintech Acquisitions

The acquisition gives WePay access to J.P. Morgan's network of more than 4 million small-business customers.

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. announced on Tuesday that it has agreed to acquire WePay Inc., a San Francisco startup that processes credit card payments online on platforms such as GoFundMe or CrowdRise, for an undisclosed amount.

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The deal marks the first sizable acquisition in J.P. Morgan’s recently announced investment plan, in which the banking giant has committed to expanding in the thriving fintech sector.

According to the WSJ, the price it heard from a person familiar with the matter is north of the $220 million valuation that the payment provider picked up in a 2015 fundraising.

The acquisition gives WePay access to J.P. Morgan’s network of more than 4 million small-business customers.

Founded in 2008, WePay originally started as a payments processor to compete against the likes of FirstData and Global Payments, as well as more established providers like PayPal and Stripe. However, the company’s co-founders Bill Clerico and Rich Aberman decided to shut down that portion of the business in 2013 to focus on crowdfunding.

WePay has to date raised decent funding from a long list of investors that includes PayPal co-founder Max Levchin and Maynard Webb, the ex-eBay executive who is now chairman of Yahoo and on the board of Visa.

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