Braintree (company)

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Industry Payment service provider
Founded 2007; 11 years ago (2007)
Founder Bryan Johnson
Headquarters Chicago, Illinois, United States
Areas served
US, Europe, Canada, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand
Key people
Juan Benitez (GM/CTO)
Number of employees
500+ (2016)
Parent eBay (2013–2014)
PayPal (2014–present)

Braintree, a division of PayPal, is a company based in Chicago that specializes in mobile and web payment systems for e-commerce companies.[1]

Braintree provides its customers with a merchant account and a payment gateway, along with various features including recurring billing, credit card storage, support for mobile and international payments, and PCI compliance solutions.[2]


Bryan Johnson founded Braintree out of the University of Chicago in 2007.[3] According to Forbes, Johnson hoped to distinguish his online payments company from the competition by making their fees transparent and targeting developers.[4]

Johnson named the company Braintree after the hometown of Presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams, a name he hoped would enable the company to attract top developers.[4]

In late 2011, Bill Ready took over as CEO.[5] Less than a year later, Braintree acquired Venmo for $26.2 million.[6]

In 2013, PayPal—then part of eBay—acquired Braintree for $800 million.[2]

Braintree announced that they would begin providing services in Australia in November 2012,[7] and expanded into Europe and Canada in August 2013.[8] In mid-2015, Braintree announced support in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Malaysia.[9]

In August 2015, PayPal acquired Chicago-based mobile commerce company Modest and rolled Modest's products into Braintree's offerings.[10]

By late 2015, Braintree was processing nearly $50 billion in Authorized Payment Volume, up from $12 billion at the time they were acquired by PayPal in 2013, and had 154 million cards on file, up from 56.5 million.[11]

Products and services[edit]

Braintree provides businesses with the ability to accept payments online or within their mobile application. Its full-stack payment platform can replace the traditional model of sourcing a payment gateway and merchant account from different providers.[12]

On October 1, 2012 Braintree launched instant signup, streamlining the onboarding process for US merchants, reducing the signup process to a few minutes.[13]

Braintree first announced the SDK in July 2014.[14] The SDK allows automatic shopping cart integration with PayPal among other payment types. In September 2014, Braintree announced a partnership with Coinbase to accept Bitcoin.[15]

GitHub,, ParkWhiz, and Chargify are among the companies that launched with the SDK, which supports One Touch Payments.[16] Current companies using the SDK include Airbnb,, Munchery, StubHub, SquadUp, TellOnMe, Type Tees by Threadless and YPlan.[17]

The family of One Touch-enabled apps includes PayPal's own mobile app where most users have a credit or debit card stored with the service. It does not require those users to create an account on an e-commerce site or enter credit card details every time they want to buy something.[16]

The concept of One Touch is based on a prior product called Venmo Touch, which was developed in conjunction with Venmo, the person-to-person payment service Braintree bought in August 2012. Venmo Touch was the first one-touch mobile buying experience to hit the market, allowing a consumer to pay in a single touch across multiple apps on their mobile device. At the time, CEO Bill Ready's strategy was to combine Venmo's reach with consumers, who used its cash-sending features to split restaurant bills and chip in for gifts, with Braintree's reach among developers.[16]

Venmo Touch has become PayPal One Touch, and it enables one-touch checkout on any digital platform – mobile app, mobile browser and desktop.[16]


Braintree requires some development experience and coding knowledge to integrate.[18]

Braintree provides client libraries and integration examples in Ruby, Python, PHP, Java, .NET, and Node JS; mobile libraries for iOS and Android; and Braintree.js for in-browser card encryption.[19]

Braintree also works with most of the leading ecommerce and billing platforms—including Bigcommerce, Shopify, Magento and Wufoo.[20]

Braintree abstains from several major business categories such as auctions, tours, gaming, ticketed events and charities, citing the difficulty to underwrite such business models.[21][22]

Credit card data portability[edit]

Braintree initiated the credit card data portability standard in 2010, which was accepted as an official action group of the DataPortability project.[23] Credit card data portability is supported by an opt-in community of electronic payment processing providers that agree to provide credit card data and associated transaction information to an existing merchant upon request in a PCI compliant manner.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]