At last, a payment tech solution that is not just hot air

The payments sector continues to move in the right direction as former PayPal senior employees gain large VC investment. FX brokers have a better future to look forward to as this dynamic continues

It has been very clear over the years that many of the payment solutions providers aimed at assisting electronic financial services companies with the challenges of making global transactions between themselves and clients have been less than reputable.

Indeed, many of the donkey jacket-clad peddlers of payment services to retail FX firms have gained an odious reputation for being thick-accented back street money launderers who hail from the affiliate marketing and rather illicit online ‘services’ sector, their service having as much to do with technology as onions have to do with thermonuclear fission.

Most have only served to cause the regulators to have great cause for concern, and some have been identified as outright fraudsters.

This year, however, a much needed redress has been taking place, as Western companies are heading into the payment sector with genuine solutions that are transparent and recognized by proper bona fide institutions.

In addition, they’re being recognized as an important mainstay, and are attracting venture capital investment from seasoned private equity houses.

It’s a case of move over ill-dressed, poorly mannered peddler with broken English and a dubious past, hello the gray suit. Today’s move in this direction is represented by the raising of a £14 million in a Series A funding round led by Accel by Primer, a British payments start up.

Existing investors Balderton, SpeedInvest and Seedcamp also participated, and were joined in the round by RTP Global.

The investment brings Primer’s total funding to £17.8 million, coming just weeks after the initial launch of the company’s platform.

Founded this year by a pair of former senior European employees at PayPal-owned Braintree, Primer is building an API to help online merchants consolidate their payments stack.

The firm is promising to help sellers quickly integrate an ever-growing range of payment options in different markets, ensuring a smooth checkout process for customers as well as data driven insights.

Primer co-founder, and head of product and engineering, Paul Anthony says: “During our time at PayPal, we saw first-hand the technical burden online merchants face trying to offer the best payments experiences to their customers globally. Our low-code approach enables merchants’ payments teams to manage and expand their payments ecosystems, and maintain sophisticated payments logic with a familiar workflow UI. We’re delighted to be working with Sonali and the wider Accel team to go to market internationally.”

The more payment entities that become available to the electronic financial services industry which have senior management from well known large entities such as PayPal, along with proper funding, corporate governance and approval by mainstream banks, the less the FX industry will have to rely on semi-literate goons who mis-spent their childhoods stealing fruit from markets in South Tel Aviv and view payments as an affiliate revenue share channel rather than a genuine, bank-approved technology solution for conveying funds safely from one account to another.

If London becomes the de facto center for payments, a new dawn will materialize for brokers globally.

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