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Report: PayPal close to deal to acquire Braintree payments platform

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eBay-owned PayPal is nearing an agreement to acquire startup Braintree Payments Solutions, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Braintree enables developers, merchants and other clients to accept payments within their mobile apps and websites, collecting a 2.9 percent commission and 30-cent transaction fee on each purchase. The firm processes more than $10 billion annually. Sources close to the negotiations said PayPal is looking at Braintree to accelerate its efforts to generate increased revenues from mobile device-enabled transactions while also giving the digital commerce giant access to consumer data and transaction fees from Braintree partners like OpenTable, Uber Technologies and Airbnb.

An eBay spokesperson and Braintree CEO Bill Ready both declined to comment. The Wall Street Journal said terms of the proposed deal remain unknown, adding that insiders cautioned the talks could still break down.

PayPal's existing applications for Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS and Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android enable consumers in close to 125 international markets to make payments at restaurants, stores and other businesses--users may also send and request funds, browse nearby offers and order food ahead of pickup. The company's mobile efforts also include PayPal Here, which enables small businesses and other users to process credit and debit transactions by swiping cards through a dongle that attaches to their smartphone or tablet. PayPal Here charges U.S. merchants a flat rate of 2.7 percent per transaction, a .05 percent savings over rival Square's mobile payment offering. Earlier this month, PayPal unveiled Beacon, an add-on technology enabling consumers to complete in-store mobile payments without removing their phone.

PayPal is expected to handle around $20 billion in mobile transactions this year, up from $14 billion a year ago. Research firm eMarketer reports mobile commerce-enabled transactions across the United States will reach $41.68 billion in 2013, increasing 68.2 percent from 2012 totals of $24.78 billion.

For more:
- read this Wall Street Journal article

Related articles:
PayPal introduces Beacon hands-free mobile payments system
PayPal overhauls iOS, Android apps with new payment options, offers
PayPal streamlines mobile shopping with simplified sign-in
PayPal Here expands to Europe ahead of mobile payment rival Square
PayPal expands mobile wallet to more retailers, tests order-ahead pickup

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