Thursday 19 September 2019

Stripe snaps up Dublin payments firm Touchtech to continue growth

John Collison, left, and Patrick Collison, founders of Stripe Inc. Photo: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg
John Collison, left, and Patrick Collison, founders of Stripe Inc. Photo: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg
Adrian Weckler

Adrian Weckler

The payments firm Stripe has acquired a Dublin-based payments tech firm called Touchtech, founded by Shekinah Adewumi and Joseph Kuye.

Touchtech, founded in 2013, makes it easier and more secure to authenticate payments on smartphones. The company’s main technology product was designed partly to ease reliance on passwords.

No acquisition price has been announced as part of the deal.

Touchtech previously received Enterprise Ireland funding and a small amount of venture finance.

Spokespeople for Stripe and Touchtech were unavailable to comment on the acquisition.

However, it is understood that the Touchtech employees will join Stripe across core areas such as engineering, sales and marketing in Stripe’s Dublin office.

Stripe currently employs over 150 people in Dublin but has said that it plans to rapidly increase its headcount after receiving an e-banking licence from the Irish Central Bank. It employs over 1,500 people worldwide.

Stripe is currently valued at $22.5bn (€20bn) after raising $100m (€88m) in ‘follow-on’ finance earlier this year.

Founders Patrick and John Collison, from Limerick, are regularly cited as being among the youngest self-made billionaires in the world.

In a written statement, Stripe’s chief product officer, Will Gaybrick said:

“Touchtech adds yet another layer to the economic infrastructure Stripe is building for the internet, which is designed to help businesses comply not only with SCA but also with the entire next generation of regional payment regulations.

“On the modern internet, payments should be everything you’d expect: easy, secure, and fully compliant with the latest regulations. Unfortunately, these three attributes are often at odds with one another, making it nearly impossible for an individual business to keep pace with regulatory changes and build a great payments product experience for their customers.”

The founders of Touchtech said in a blog post:

“We’re thrilled to announce we’ve been acquired by Stripe, which will help us accelerate our work and support more customers. Strong Customer Authentication, a new EU regulation coming into effect on September 14, 2019, will radically change the way European customers buy online. As a result, the internet payment landscape is going to change a great deal, and both banks and businesses operating online are going to have to adapt.

Touchtech’s focus is on making it straightforward for banks to provide the best authentication experience to their customers. Our technology is used on a daily basis by some of Europe’s most innovative startups and challenger banks, like N26, Transferwise, and many others, to enable frictionless and secure authentication on mobile and desktop.”

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