PayPal buys payments startup iZettle for $2.2b

The compan­y said that its bigges­t acquis­ition to date would streng­then its platfo­rm for handli­ng paymen­t transa­ctions­

A PayPal sign is seen at an office building in San Jose, California May 28, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

SAN FRANSICO: PayPal on Thursday announced a deal to buy Swedish online commerce startup iZettle for $2.2 billion, a deal that came as the young company was poised for a stock market debut.

US-based PayPal, a unit of eBay, said that its biggest acquisition to date would strengthen its platform for handling payment transactions at small businesses, particularly in Europe and Latin America.

“Small businesses are the engine of the global economy and we are continuing to expand our platform to help them compete and win online, in-store and via mobile,” PayPal chief executive Dan Schulman said in a release.

“In today’s digital world, consumers want to be able to buy when, where and how they want.”

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Schulman described the merging of iZettle and PayPal as a “strategic fit” combining shared values and culture with complementary product offerings and geographies.

The iZettle platform for handling retail transactions is used by nearly a half million merchants, according to PayPal.

The startup has been compared to Square, a payments platform co-founded by Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey that made it easy to take credit card payments using smartphones or tablets.

Buying iZettle will expand PayPal’s reach into shops in Brazil, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, and Sweden.

“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,” iZettle chief executive Jacob de Geer said in the release.

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