After abandoning an attempt to acquire Plaid earlier this year, Visa has its sights set on another open banking fintech, Tink. Visa plans to acquire Tink for $2.15B, helping it expand beyond traditional card payments into open banking. Tink connects to connect banks accounts with apps and services using a single API, vastly simplifying open banking. However, the deal isn’t final yet, and still must face regulatory approval, a hurdle that Visa couldn’t overcome when trying to acquire Plaid. The Visa-Plaid deal fell through due to a US DOJ antitrust lawsuit claiming the acquisition would reduce competition. Visa’s determination to acquire an open banking API is quite telling. FinTechs like Plaid and Tink have the potential to disrupt the traditional card payment and debit business, especially that of Visa.
Virgin Galactic just passed its drivers test…for taking commercial passengers into space. The announcement caused Virgin Galactic’s stock to jump 38.9% on Friday, the company’s highest single-day rise. Virgin Galactic’s spacecraft Unity will carry up to six “spaceflight participants” (i.e. not trained astronauts) and two pilots. There’s a new kind of space race emerging in space tourism, as Big Tech companies compete to get tourists (and their founders) into orbit first. Virgin Galactic, SpaceX, and Blue Origin are all in the running to get paying customers up into space. However, though Jeff Bezos is scheduled to head into suborbit on 20 July aboard Blue Origin, the spaceflight company has yet to receive FAA approval for commercial passengers, putting Virgin Galactic at the forefront of this race.
Etsy, Inc has announced the acquisition of Elo7, called the “Etsy of Brazil” by Etsy CEO Josh Silverman. A top 10 ecommerce site in Brazil, Elo7 connects approximately 1.9 million active buyers to around 56k active sellers, primarily consisting of custom and made-to-order merchandise. This acquisition will allow Etsy to establish a foothold in Latin America, an underpenetrated region that could significantly expand Etsy’s TAM. This news comes less than a month after Etsy announced the acquisition of Depop, a leader in the fast-growing fashion resale market popular with Gen Z consumers. Together, Elo7 and Depop allow Etsy to reach new markets with huge growth potential and strengthen their position in the ecommerce sector.