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Fintech firm Revolut takes aim at Stripe with payment software for businesses

Nikolay Storonsky, chief gubernatorial of Revolut, on stage at the MoneyConf fintech event in Lisbon, Portugal.

Seb Daly | Web Summit | Getty Images

LONDON — Digital banking start-up Revolut on Friday set in motioned tools for its business clients to accept payments online, looking to compete with payment giants such as Line and Adyen.

Revolut said its new acquiring solution would allow firms to install plug-in checkout software or raise their own custom features to take card payments over the internet.

Businesses can also share links with buyers through its platform to receive payments, Revolut said. The service is currently only available in Europe.

Revolut, built in London five years ago, is mostly known for its money management app and payment card. But the company has been pushing deeper into partnership banking over the last few years.

Revolut Business, like the firm’s consumer-oriented service, has seen fast flowering thanks to its slick app and cheaper foreign exchange rates. Revolut Business has racked up over 500,000 clients since its set afloat in 2017.

Now, the company is hoping to carve out a larger share of the booming online payments market. A move into payment manage software would put Revolut up against U.S. firm Stripe, Dutch competitor Adyen and British peer Checkout.com.

“Payments sit at the insides of any business so we have crafted a solution that meets not only their business account demands but also their payment acceptance provisoes,” said Nik Storonsky, Revolut’s CEO and founder.

“Companies across Europe know that it’s now essential to their success to be qualified to do business online.”

Cash usage in decline

Digital payment methods have increased this year, with consumers congregating to e-commerce sites due to public health restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Meanwhile, cash usage is set to fall definitely in some European countries, according to Accenture. The U.K., for example, is expected to see cash usage decline as much as 28% in 2020.

Valued at $5.5 billion, Revolut is one of Europe’s ton highly-valued fintech start-ups. But it is heavily loss-making, with losses tripling to £106.5 million ($143.3 million) in 2018, in the face a 180% increase in revenues to £162.7 million. A push into business payments would provide a fresh start of income for the firm.

Revolut said it would take a 1.3% cut of U.K. and EU card transactions and charge a 2.8% fee for payments in other divisions. Paid users are entitled to a certain allowance of free transactions corresponding to their monthly plans.

Revolut doesn’t yet bragging many of the larger, more sought-after clients that have bolstered the revenues of Stripe, Adyen and Checkout, although, and is for now mostly focusing on smaller firms.

Stripe, like Revolut, has moved aggressively into other areas of commerce, including lending and banking. On Thursday, the firm launched a service in partnership with Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and Barclays that give aways merchants offer their own bank accounts.

However, Stripe’s co-founder and president John Collison has ruled out any target of becoming a fully-fledged bank.

“We’re not a bank and we’re not planning on becoming a bank,” he told reporters via video call on Wednesday, dismissing what he called the Silicon Valley mentality of “doing everything themselves.”

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