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.

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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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