Visa Abandons $5.3B Acquisition of Plaid Over DOJ Antitrust Concerns

The Department of Justice announced Tuesday the deal is off.

AccessTimeIconJan 12, 2021 at 10:13 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 10:55 a.m. UTC

Visa called off its $5.3 billion acquisition of Plaid, the fintech firm serving as a fiat bridge for a number of crypto and decentralized finance (DeFi) applications.

  • The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Tuesday the two companies have officially called off their planned merger in the wake of the DOJ's lawsuit last year that sought to block the deal.
  • The DOJ filed a civil antitrust suit on Nov. 5, 2020, to stop the merger, claiming Visa is a monopolist in online debit, charging both consumers and merchants billions of dollars in fees each year to process online payments. 
  • "Now that Visa has abandoned its anticompetitive merger, Plaid and other future fintech innovators are free to develop potential alternatives to Visa's online debit services," Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim said in a statement. "With more competition, consumers can expect lower prices and better services."
  • As CoinDesk previously reported, Plaid has worked with Coinbase and at least two decentralized finance (DeFi) startups.
  • The DOJ reported Plaid earned approximately $100 million in revenue in 2019.

DISCLOSURE

Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.