The lines between traditional payments networks and fintech continue to blur with Visa’s acquisition of the London-based firm
Visa officially announced on Thursday that it had signed a definitive agreement to acquire Currencycloud, a fintech platform supporting about 500 banking and technology clients across more than 180 countries.
The new acquisition aims to improve Visa’s foreign exchange business and expand them to serve financial institutions, fintechs and partners. The deal will specifically improve Visa’s payment transparency and speed, the company’s global treasurer Colleen Ostrowski said, stating:
“The acquisition of Currency cloud is another example of Visa executing on our network of networks strategy to facilitate global money movement. Consumers and businesses increasingly expect transparency, speed and simplicity when making or receiving international payments.”The new acquisition is based on an existing strategic collaboration between the two firms, as Visa already owns an equity stake in Currencycloud, valued at $956 million, including cash and retention incentives. Last year, Visa participated in an $80-million funding round for Currencycloud alongside investors such as Japanese financial conglomerate SBI Group.
According to the announcement, Currencycloud will maintain its operations from the company’s headquarters in London and will keep its current management team. The acquisition is still subject to regulatory approval.
Related: BlockFi starts shipping Visa-backed Bitcoin rewards credit cards
The acquisition comes shortly after Currencycloud entered a partnership with Ripple, a major cryptocurrency company behind the XRP token. Currencycloud officially announced its collaboration with Ripple in early July in order to explore new mechanisms for cross-border transactions, particularly focusing on jurisdictions where regulations restrict opportunities for small and mid-size enterprises.
A spokesperson for Visa told Cointelegraph that the companies will continue operating as separate entities until closing. “It is business as usual until then,” the representative stated.
The latest acquisition comes as Visa moves forward with its commitment to digital currency adoption, actively embracing both major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) and fiat-pegged stablecoins. Last week, Visa approved the issuance of a new Bitcoin debit card in Australia.