Following rumors last week, today PayPal confirmed it has acquired cryptocurrency custody firm Curv. Financial terms were not disclosed, but Israeli press put the figure as $200 million to $300 million.
PayPal launched cryptocurrency trading in the U.S. late last year with the service powered by U.S.-based Paxos.
“The acquisition of Curv is part of our effort to invest in the talent and technology to realize our vision for a more inclusive financial system,” said Jose Fernandez da Ponte, VP and general manager, blockchain, crypto and digital currencies, PayPal.
“During our conversations with Curv’s team, we’ve been impressed by their technical talent, entrepreneurial spirit, and the thinking behind the technology they’ve built in the last few years. We’re excited to welcome the Curv team to PayPal.”
PayPal expects to complete the acquisition in the first half of 2021.
Curv is one of a small group of custody startups with advanced technology that appeals to institutional users. It uses multi-party computation that means that multiple parties create cryptographic secrets instead of having a single private key for transactions. A subset of the secret shares are needed for transactions.
“As a pioneer in security infrastructure for digital assets, Curv is proud to be recognized as an innovator and trusted partner to leading financial institutions around the world,” said Curv co-founder and CEO Itay Malinger. “Now, as the adoption of digital assets accelerates, we feel there’s no better home than PayPal to continue our journey of innovation. We’re excited to join PayPal in expanding the role these assets play in the global economy.”
This is one of the first of what is likely to be quite a bit of merger and acquisition (M&A) activity as institutions adopt blockchain and digital asset technology. Other major digital asset custody players include Anchorage and Metaco.