PayPal Holdings Inc. is exploring acquisitions of cryptocurrency companies including Bitcoin custodian BitGo Inc., according to people familiar with the matter, a move that would expand its embrace of digital coins.
PayPal has been holding talks with BitGo, a company that helps investors store Bitcoin securely, and could reach a deal within weeks, the people said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private. Talks could still fall apart and PayPal could opt to buy other targets, the people added.
It couldn’t be learned how much PayPal would pay for BitGo if it goes ahead with the deal. BitGo raised $58.5 million in 2018 at a $170 million valuation, according to PitchBook.
The company applied in August to New York regulators to become an independent, regulated qualified custodian under New York State Banking Law, a press release showed. Custodians are responsible for safekeeping digital assets using secure storage.
PayPal announced on Wednesday that its customers can buy, sell and hold cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, Ether, Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin from digital wallets, as well as use the virtual money to shop at the 26 million merchants on its network. The announcement led Bitcoin to surge past $13,000 for the first time since July 2019.
PayPal said it would partner with BitGo competitor Paxos Trust Company, a regulated provider of cryptocurrency products and services for its new service.
BitGo is backed by investors including Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Craft Ventures, Digital Currency Group, DRW, Galaxy Digital Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Valor Equity Partners and Founders Fund.