California-based online payment processor PayStand has launched out of private beta to provide US-based websites and mobile applications another way to accept payments such e-checks, credit cards and bitcoin.
With the announcement, PayStand also revealed $1m in new investment as part of its initial seed-funding round.
Founded in 2009, PayStand aims to be a multi-payment gateway that eliminates merchant transaction fees, in part by supporting digital currency acceptance.
Said PayStand in its official announcement:
“PayStand is the first and only payments service to easily allow bitcoin and other digital [currencies] as well as more traditional payments all at the same time and eliminates merchant transaction fees with a unique ‘payments-as-a-service’ model.”
The Santa Cruz startup boasts an easy setup process and flexible commitments for merchants who want to test the waters with something new. The company notes its service “does not require any extra hosting accounts, payment processors, merchant accounts, programming [or] order management software”.
Notably, the news comes as more major payments tech startups are embracing bitcoin.
Digital currency roots
Jeremy Almond, PayStand’s CEO, has indicated that the idea for his company grew out of his own investing and experiments with digital currencies.
However, although he was enthusiastic about the potential of bitcoin and its alternatives, he chose to incorporate additional services into PayStand, believing standalone solutions would not be widely adopted.
Even so, Almond is understanding of the big-picture implications of digital currencies, telling TechCrunch:
“We believe that the process of money movement is going through a massive evolution, and our goal is to support this broadly.”
How PayStand works
With PayStand, online merchants pay a monthly fee for the payment software, thereby avoiding transaction fees associated with its more traditional payment options. Merchants do not pay any added costs on bitcoin transactions.
Likewise, consumers enjoy a one-click payment process, meaning they don’t experience the added friction imposed by passwords and other security methods.
Unlike merchant processors such as BitPay or Coinbase, however, PayStand users who want to accept bitcoin need to first set up a bitcoin wallet address. Merchants can then have bitcoin deposited to their personal wallets or sent to an exchange to be converted into fiat currencies, reports say.
Perhaps most notably, the company states on its website that bitcoin acceptance may be part of further services in digital currency space, as it calls bitcoin just “the first digital currency in line for our eCash payment option”.