Square signs on Sir Richard Branson as new investor

Summary:Mobile payments solution Square is about to get a whole lot bigger now that Sir Richard Branson is an investor.

Square has scored a major coup by signing on Sir Richard Branson as new investor.

Branson is known worldwide for being a business magnate with wild success in building companies, particularly those under The Virgin Group brand umbrella such as Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Mobile, just to name a couple of properties.

Even Virgin America, which Branson has a much smaller stake in as American domestic carriers are required by law to have a majority of U.S. investors, has grown rapidly since the airline first took off in 2007 to become heralded as the world's top domestic airline. Perhaps now we'll even see Square soon used while onboard a flight some time soon.

Square has surged in its own regard since launching in 2010 as one of the more popular and very simple methods of accepting credit cards on iOS and Android mobile devices.

Although it is only available in the United States so far, the San Francisco-based startup has already shipped over 800,000 card readers to merchants and is now processing over $2 billion in payments annually.

Additionally, Square also recently closed a round of Series-C financing led by Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers that raised $100 million.

An international expansion is planned for 2012, and Branson's financial involvement could give that and Square's overall fight in the crowding market of mobile payments a significant boost.


Topics: Banking, Developer


Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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