Payment giant PayPal has confirmed the acquisition of Curv, a cryptocurrency custody company based in Israel.
According to PayPal, the company's acquisition of Curv is part of its initiative to support cryptocurrencies and digital assets. The platform said it plans to complete the acquisition before the third quarter of 2021, but did not disclose the amount of the acquisition.
Israeli media Calcalist said last week that the purchase price could be between 200 million and 300 million U.S. dollars. CNBC reported on Monday that "the value of this transaction is less than 200 million U.S. dollars."
The announcement stated that Curv will join PayPal's newly formed blockchain, encryption, and digital currency business team.
Jose Fernandez da Ponte, vice president, and general manager of PayPal's encryption and blockchain division said: "The acquisition of Curv is part of our efforts to invest in talent and technology to achieve our vision of a more inclusive financial system. In a conversation with the Curv team, We are deeply impressed by their technical talents, entrepreneurial spirit, and the ideas behind the technologies they have developed in the past few years."
Curve's CRV token rose by more than 10% within an hour of the news, to $2.60, but has since fallen to $2.35.
Before the acquisition of Curv, PayPal expanded into the encryption field. In October 2020, the platform announced for the first time that from 2021, its customers will be able to use cryptocurrency to shop at any merchant in its network. U.S. residents can currently use the payment platform to buy and sell cryptocurrencies, but PayPal said it will soon expand these services to the United Kingdom.
Curv co-founder Itay Malinger said that as the adoption of digital assets accelerates, the company believes that "there is no better home than PayPal to continue our journey of innovation."
PayPal has been looking for opportunities to acquire crypto custody for several months. It has approached BitGo, but the transaction failed. Curv uses multi-party computing to ensure the security of its encrypted assets and relies on numbers and codes to protect funds.
The German insurance company Munich RE provides guarantees for Curv’s assets, enabling Curv customers to insure digital assets of up to 50 million U.S. dollars. The platform supports more than 200 tokens, including all ERC-20 tokens.
Currently, PayPal only supports the buying and selling of four cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash.
This landmark transaction between PayPal and Curv may be the company's first confirmed plan to acquire a crypto company.