- Joining other banking-as-a-service (BaaS) providers in raising capital, Central Payments has raised $30 million in a growth equity raise, according to a Thursday press release. Central Payments provides payments technology and issues prepaid cards.
- Castle Creek Capital led the funding round, and Launchpad Capital contributed to the round. The investment will enable the company to grow and separate from the Central Bank of Kansas City, which will remain an investor, issuer and strategic partner. Central Payments was founded in 2014.
- The funding also will be used to fuel growth with investments in technology, product and staffing, according to the Aug. 11 news release.
“Since inception, we have remained steadfast in our belief that new technology and the stability of a bank charter create opportunity for banks in fintech and embedded finance, while others may have perceived a threat,” Trent Sorbe, Central Payments’ founder and president, said in a statement. “This raise will enable us to continue trailblazing with our Technology Charter Choice approach.”
Central Payments’ current leadership team will remain in place, and the company will soon announce its board of directors, according to the press release. The separation between the Central Bank of Kansas City and Central Payments follows the September 2020 partnership between the two and Paysend. As part of the collaboration, U.S. consumers could send payments to bank account holders in 70 countries within minutes via Paysend.
Paysend, which has 7 million customers worldwide, saw its U.S. customer base grow 66% year over year to more than 500,000, as of May. The company attributed the spike to the rollout of its cross-border money transfer service in the U.S. and Latin America in collaboration with Visa Direct, Mastercard Send, Central Payments and MOVii. Due to its partnership with Central Payments, Paysend noted that it will launch its international ACH transaction services later this year to facilitate payments in other countries.
Besides Central Payments, other BaaS providers have raised funds this year. Cross River Bank raised $620 million in March to support its international expansion. The following month, NovoPayment raised $19 million to help the company hire more employees and open new offices in California and Texas.
Though banking-as-a-service providers may be immune to the venture capital slowdown, not all firms that offer BaaS services are thriving on all fronts, including with respect to future business. Green Dot recently disclosed that it is in a legal dispute with Uber, and it noted in an earnings report that multiple customers did not renew their contracts with the company.
In that earnings report for the second quarter, Green Dot said its total revenue slipped 2% to $363 million for the quarter relative to the year-ago quarter, and net income dropped 40% to $15 million, though its business-to-business segment, which includes its BaaS results, increased profits for the quarter by 25% to $22.8 million on a 27% increase in revenue to $144 million.
Clarification: This story has been updated to add more details on Green Dot’s results.