Silicon Valley Payments Company Worth US$20 Bil Eyes Southeast Asian Expansion

Silicon Valley Payments Company Worth US$20 Bil Eyes Southeast Asian Expansion

by October 5, 2018

Stripe, a Silicon Valley API software that started with just a few lines of code now helps Fortune 500 companies process transactions online. According to Fortune, Stripe’s early days saw it being used among small businesses that want to engage in e-commerce, but it has since gained coveted customers such as Google, Microsoft, Uber, Spotify, and Salesforce, among others.

While it is primarily known in the USA, the platform is able to accept multiple currencies, though its last foray into bitcoin payments ended in failure due to the currency’s volatility.

Stripe is also what they describe as a “payments stack”, by offering applications that also provide revenue data through API. As a result, they raised US$245 million in funding, and now it’s heard the siren song of its Silicon Valley contemporaries and set its sights on global expansion—with Southeast Asia and India a glimmer in their eye.

The funds will be well-spent, as Stripe will now have to figure out how to comply with local regulatory requirements. The company is also looking at opening a hub right here in Singapore and has been hiring aggressively. It even already has a Singapore domain registered, and according to the website, services Grab and Deliveroo among others.

In fact, Stripe has already launched its services in Singapore.

To expand beyond though, the company will have to contend with each nation’s own internet payment enablers in such a rich fintech space, as well as others that may have made their expansions into the region. So to capture their own market segment, Stripe will have to either be really good at their core business, offer competitive prices, or add on unique features.

Potential Strategy

In their hometown, Stripe was able to make it big, according to its founder John Collison, by being with a company throughout their gradual expansion from internet companies into retail back in its startup past.

This may not be the best strategy in Singapore, but regions such as Indonesia, Phillippines, Vietnam, Thailand and etc could see the company faring better for a similar strategy, and based on its modus operandi in Singapore, charging a percentage per successful transaction could make them appealing to consumers.

As we spoke about in here though, this will be a competitive endeavour though they have much governmental backing on their side.

But linking businesses to mobile payments hasn’t all that Stripe’s been doing.

In just some of their more recent product releases, the company launched  Stripe Issuing, which would let its customers issue their own debit cards, and Stripe Terminal, a POS system and cash registers integrated with Stripe payments.

Though its origins lie with the internet, the still strong retail presence in Asia, as well as strong wet market and hawker store culture could see Stripe gaining ground—if they launch it here at least.