Stripe Inc. offers a cloud-based payment platform that connects businesses with credit card and banking systems to receive payments in a flash. The company's technology enables vendors to accept credit card payments with reduced software setup and it enables in-person point-of-sale transactions and mobile payments. The privately held company handles tens of billions of online transactions a year, charging a fee on each one. It has branched out to offer a variety of other financial services, including fraud detection, recording keeping, and a credit card. Stripe’s customers include online companies such as Lyft, Facebook, Zillow, and Kickstarter, as well as Amazon, Microsoft, Saks, Target, and Fender. Brothers Patrick and John Collison started the San Francisco-based company, which released its first product in 2011.
The foundation of Stripe’s business is its payments platform, which handles money transfers and billing. A product called Connect provides elements that support a range of business models that include on-demand, ecommerce, crowdfunding, and travel and events. Companies like ride-sharing company Lyft can make deposits directly into its drivers' accounts through their debit cards. Stripe charges a 2.9% fee on credit card payments in exchange for its services; the fee can be lower for customers with higher volumes.
In a fraud detection product called Radar, Stripe uses AI software to analyze payments on its network and identify suspect activity.
A Stripe product called Atlas helps new companies get off the ground by handling incorporation in Delaware, getting a taxpayer number, setting up a US bank account, and receiving legal and tax advice on forming a company. Atlas is geared toward foreign companies looking to enter the US market but US companies are customers, as well.
Stripe is based in San Francisco and has offices in about 10 cities around the world including Dublin, London, Paris, Singapore, and Tokyo. Stripe’s products are used in more than 25 countries.
From its start, Stripe aimed to be a financial services company of a different kind. Instead of going through a potential customer's procurement or finance department, Stripe targeted the developers who would have to write the software for handling payments. Its initial pitch was ease-of-use: developers had to add just seven lines of computer code to enable Stripe’s software. That saves time and money in implementing a key technology. Another Stripe tactic was to go after online companies such as ride share outfits who needed a quick and easy way to take payments from customers and distribute a portion to drivers and the rest to themselves. Stripe used such accounts to call on the brick-and-mortar retailers anxious to move into online commerce.
As Stripe established itself as a key provider of cloud-based transaction software, it added products and services. In 2018, Stripe started its own credit card issuing service. It is certified with major card networks as an issuing processor, and it includes support for Apple Pay and Google Pay, allows programmatic dispute handling, and provides real-time authorization hooks.
Many of Stripe's competitors are establish financial services companie with deep pockets. They include Visa and MasterCard, banks, and payment processors such as BrainTree, a unit of PayPal, Adyen, a European cloud payment processor, and First Data Corp., which has increased its cloud-based capacities in recent years.
Patrick and John Collison started Stripe in San Francisco after studying at MIT. Born in Ireland they came to the US for college. The valuation of Stripe at more than $9 billion puts them among the world’s youngest billionaires. Patrick was born in 1988 and John in 1990.
Stripe has been called a unicorn company, meaning that its valuation as a private company exceeds $1 billion. Its valuation stands at more than $9 billion after investments totaling $450 million. Investors include Sequoia Capital, Visa, American Express, Peter Thiel, and Elon Musk.
510 TOWNSEND ST
San Francisco, CA 94103-4918
Phone: 1 (888) 963-8955
Employer Type: Privately Owned
Corporate Counsel: Vince Cogan
CEO: Patrick Collison
Account Executive: Matthew Yalowitz
Employees (This Location): 1,100
Employees (All Locations): 1,100