Braintree adds Venmo Payouts API with focus on merchants

Braintree is adding another service to its Venmo portfolio to enable merchants to make immediate, automatic payments to service providers.

Many of Braintree's mobile payments tools have been designed to enable developers to provide a seamless experience for consumers, but it's latest introduction has merchants in mind.

The Chicago-based company is introducing Venmo Payouts, an API that should enable merchants to make immediate, automatic payments to service providers.

Here's how it works. Braintree customers will be able to pay their service providers from any bank account to a Venmo user, U.S. phone number or email address with a single API call.

Receivers are immediately notified they have been paid -- regardless if they are a Venmo user or not. Service providers can then apply the money to Venmo accounts or cash out within a business day.

Furthermore, Braintree touted that by using the Venmo Payments API, service providers won't have to risk storing their payees' banking information.

Venmo Payouts will cost 25 cents per payout. In addition to promising that there won't be any additional fees or commitments, Braintree is offering the first 1,000 transactions for free during a beta period.

To recall, Braintree bought mobile payments startup Venmo in August for $26.2 million .

Venmo produced an app that enabled people to send each other payments (from bank accounts, credit cards, etc) directly on the smartphone app without any other hardware required.

Braintree started putting its new resources to use soon after, starting with the debut of Braintree Instant , a payments aggregator service designed to eliminate the waiting period for a merchant account or underwriting approval.

The e-commerce business followed up in January with the introduction of Venmo Touch, touted as a single sign-on approach to mobile payments.