PayPal has acquired Modest, a Chicago-based mobile technology company that promises to enable contextual commerce, the likes of which powers the new crop of buy buttons popping up on social media sites.
The Modest platform lets retailers insert buy buttons into online content including blogs, ads, email and social media, according to ZDNet. The plan is for PayPal to merge the technology with payments subsidiary, Braintree, which powers Pinterest's buyable pins.
Modest was in stealth mode (start-up speak for "quietly in development") and its founders—Harper Reed and Dylan Richard—worked at e-commerce company Threadless. Reed was also the chief technology officer for President Obama's 2012 re-election campaign and Dylan was the lead engineer for the campaign. They both will join PayPal and work from its Chicago offices.
"Contextual commerce is an exciting opportunity for PayPal, representing a new frontier for commerce that is rapidly growing," said Bill Ready, senior VP, global head of merchant and next-generation commerce, PayPal. "The acquisition of Modest will help us do amazing things in this area, faster than ever before.
"For merchants, this means PayPal will be able to offer a complete commerce solution (payments and order management) to help them add contextual commerce channels to the ways that they sell to their customers. For consumers it will mean seamless, simpler, and safer ways to buy the things they want, anywhere they discover them."
And now that PayPal is free from parent company eBay, the Modest acquisition will likely be one of many mobile commerce initiatives for the new standalone company.
-See this PayPal announcement
-See this ZDNet story
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