Visa Nears Deal to Buy Fintech Startup Plaid Innovation

A deal would give Visa Plaid’s software, which can access customers’ bank-account data and aggregate it for financial-services providers. Photo: Keith Srakocic/Associated Press
Visa Inc. V 0.81% is nearing a deal to buy privately held financial-technology firm Plaid Inc., according to people familiar with the matter.

A deal between the companies could be announced this week, the people said, though it is still possible talks could fall through. Details of the expected transaction including the price couldn’t be learned, but Plaid was valued at roughly $2.65 billion in a 2018 funding round.

Plaid’s software can access customers’ bank-account data and aggregate it for financial-services providers. The expected acquisition could create a platform that allows money to move between bank accounts, and competes against money-transfer services like Zelle and PayPal Holdings Inc.’s Venmo.

The acquisition could help Visa tap into the trillions of dollars sent by wire transfer or bank account globally each year and expand the ways the card giant helps firms send and receive money through bank accounts.

Visa last year acquired control of Earthport, which provides cross-border payment services to banks and businesses.

Both Visa and its rival Mastercard Inc. had invested in Plaid as part of the 2018 funding round, according to S&P Capital IQ.

Write to Cara Lombardo at cara.lombardo@wsj.com and AnnaMaria Andriotis at annamaria.andriotis@wsj.com

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