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Stripe.com Disrupts Traditional Payments by Knowing Their Audience

Posted on May 22, 2012

When it comes to payment processing, succes often lies in understanding your audience.  Technical prodigy, Patrick Collison, understands his tech-savvy audience first-hand.  He and his brother John founded Stripe when Patrick was working on a few side jobs and constantly complaining about how difficult is was to accept payments on the web.  The two brothers put their heads together and within 2-weeks they were processing payments.

Next, John and Patrick field tested Stripe with their friends and follow developers.  With quick feedback they went through numerous iterations, making Stripe easy for developers to implement on a web-site and easy to understand from a business perspective.  In fact, if you visit Stripe's web site you will see code samples displaying on the home page. Not exactly what you might consider user-friendly, but for the tech-savvy start-up market this seems to be right on point.

The question is, can Stripe really be a distruptive force in the payments industry, or is it destined to go the way of many a payments start-up when confronting the vice-like grip existing payment netowrks have on the market.  One thing is for sure, this energetic young man from Limerick just may be able to take the $18 million in capital raised from Sequoia Capital and use it to solve the complex riddle of modernizing payment processing.

Before their launch last fall, Stripe reportedly had more than 1,000 developers on a waiting list and is growing almost exclusively by positive word of mouth.  However, how far can your friends and family in Silicon Valley really take you?  And once Stripe moves beyond the tech start-up, does it have the reporting and scalability needed to be a serious contender?

In any case, the story of seeing identifying a business problem, devising a simple solution, testing it with the audience and taking it to market is a story that never gets old.  Patrick, if you need a partner with some serious experience in processing billions of payments a year, we are here to help.

For the complete interview and video visit the TechCrunch article by Derek Andersen.