Fast-Growing Payments Startup Adyen Flexes Its Muscle

January 14, 2016, 1:00 PM UTC
Photograph by Simon Dawson—Getty Images

Global payments company Adyen doesn’t get nearly the amount of buzz as Silicon Valley darling Stripe and newly spun-off PayPal. But its business is making big gains, at least based on new data the company released on Thursday.

Adyen, which quietly powers online and mobile payments for the likes of Uber, Spotify, Facebook, Netflix, and Airbnb, doubled the amount of online and mobile sales it processed last year to $50 billion, the company said. Meanwhile, its revenue doubled to $350 million.

The company made $45 million in profits in 2015, according to TechCrunch.

Adyen was founded in 2006 by Pieter van der Does and Arnout Schuijff, a pair of Dutch serial entrepreneurs. The idea for Adyen was to create payment technology that would work regardless of the type of merchant, payment method, and geography. The company was an early adopter of Apple Pay, and works with such payment services as Alipay in China, Boletos in Brazil, and Qiwi in Russia.

To date, Adyen has raised over $266 million from Index Ventures, General Atlantic, and others. It was recently valued at $2.3 billion, which puts it in a elite group of startups that are worth north of $1 billion.

Adyen competes against PayPal-owned Braintree, which was also expected to process $50 billion in 2015, according to PayPal. Another rival, Stripe, doesn’t reveal the amount of money it has processed, but industry sources recently told Forbes that it processes $20 billion in payments annually

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Stripe’s valuation, however, is double that of Adyen. Kamran Zaki, the president of Adyen’s North American business, told Fortune that the company purposely was careful about balancing its valuation. “We could have shopped it around more, but we have very favorable terms, and we are happy with our investors,” he said.

Neither Braintree nor Stripe disclose their revenue.

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For Adyen, the future is in processing payments wherever consumers buy something, whether online, on a phone, or in-store, explained Zaki. The company has been powering in-store payments for a number of European brick and mortar stores including Lacoste and Mango, but it is extending this service to U.S. companies on Thursday.

By pushing into U.S. in-store payments, Adyen not only competes with Braintree and Stripe, but also goes head to head with First Data and others. Adding payment processing in U.S. retail opens a potential new opportunity for the company but also puts it up against public incumbents that have a big head start.

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