Bolt Acquires Wyre for $1.5 Billion, Firm Aims to ‘Decentralize Commerce’

On Thursday, the payments and checkout and shopper network, Bolt has announced the firm plans to acquire the digital currency provider Wyre in a $1.5 billion deal. Bolt has explained the acquisition is aimed at bolstering cryptocurrency services and “the opportunity of Web3.”

Payments and Checkout Firm Bolt Acquires Wyre

The e-commerce platform Bolt has revealed a definitive agreement to acquire Wyre, according to the company’s press statements published on Thursday. According to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), the deal was one of the largest crypto firm acquisitions in terms of financial settlement size in 2022, as the WSJ report noted the acquisition was roughly $1.5 billion. The official Bolt press release does not disclose the financial details of the acquisition deal.

The announcement explains that the companies aim to “decentralize commerce” and “simplify digital shopping.” Both Bolt and Wyre plan to “close the transaction and fully integrate before the end of the year, and once complete, the acquisition will bring the power of Bolt’s CheckoutOS—one-click checkout, authentication, payments, and fraud protection—to the cryptocurrency ecosystem.”

CEO of Bolt: ‘Acquisition Will Pave the Way for Seamless, Secure Crypto Transactions’

The firm says the benefits of the partnership include millions of Bolt network shoppers gaining access to a variety of digital currencies. Bolt detailed that “hundreds of retailers” can now accept crypto assets for goods and services. Furthermore, Bolt users will be able to acquire non-fungible tokens (NFTs) via Wyre’s APIs.

“Our merchant and retail partners expect us to always be innovating on their behalf—because their customers demand it,” the CEO of Bolt, Maju Kuruvilla said in a statement. “That’s why it’s such a thrill to announce this acquisition, which is yet another step that Bolt has taken to improve the buying experience.” The Bolt executive added:

This acquisition will pave the way for seamless, secure crypto transactions, and NFT enablement for our retailers. Both consumers and retailers will benefit from a friction-free buying experience that supports crypto and NFT natively.

Wyre is a blockchain payment platform co-founded by Michael Dunworth and Ioannis Giannaros in 2013. Wyre offers blockchain-connected payment APIs and fiat-to-crypto onramps. In December 2016, Wyre raised $5.8 million in a Series A led by Amphora Capital, Digital Currency Group (DCG) and Draper Associates. The e-commerce firm Bolt was founded a year later in 2014 by Ryan Breslow.

Bolt reported $1 billion in annualized payment volume in January of 2019, according to the Bloomberg author Olga Kharif. In 2018, the company raised $22 million in a Series A and in 2019, Bolt raised another $68 million in a Series B led by Activant Capital, and Tribe Capital. Other Bolt investors include Stanford’s Startx Fund, Floodgate, Naval Ravikant, Tom Proulx, and Jake Seid.

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