PayPal formally launches its Venmo debit card

The move is a sign that Venmo will become an even greater driver of PayPal's growth going forward.

Venmo, PayPal's largely unmonetized social payments platform, is rolling out a MasterCard debit card that will let users make in-store payments with their Venmo balance.

The move is a sign that Venmo will become an even greater driver of PayPal's growth going forward.

Read also: PayPal plans banking features like FDIC coverage by mid year

Venmo is the darling of PayPal's product portfolio and the undisputed leader in the person-to-person payments space. The social payments platform processed $12 billion of the company's total payment volume in Q1, representing growth of 80 percent over the year-ago period.

Read also: How to add PayPal to Google Pay - CNET

The payments giant has slowly introduced more payment functions with Venmo, starting with the ability to pay select businesses with Venmo through the Braintree platform. PayPal then gave Venmo users the ability to use their app balance or linked cards and bank accounts anywhere PayPal is accepted in the US via the mobile web.

Read also: How the 'PayPal Mafia' redefined success - TechRepublic

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The Venmo-branded debit card is part of PayPal strategy to expand Venmo's monetization potential in 2018. During its bi-annual investor day last month, PayPal COO Bill Ready said expanding Venmo's retail presence was "a major step in the evolution" of the platform.

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