PayPal’s acquisition of Xoom shows it’s single and ready to mingle

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Image: Reuters/Robert Galbraith
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As PayPal readies to spin off from eBay this month—flush with $5 billion in cash and no debt—it’s becoming clear the company’s acquisition spree is not going to let up anytime soon.

PayPal CEO designee Dan Schulman on Wednesday (July 1) announced it would acquire online international cash transfer business Xoom (think a modern version of Western Union) for $25 a share. It’s a big deal because Xoom, which went public in 2013 for $509 million, has been making strides in the $440 billion global money transfer market.

Schulman said Xoom’s 1.3 million active customers in the US sent $7 billion to family and friends in 37 countries during the 12 months ended March 31, and that the acquisition “will allow PayPal to quickly expand into the large and growing global transfer market.”

The purchase will also help PayPal with another big goal: Accelerate its global expansion in key countries including Mexico, India, China, Brazil, and the Philippines. Nearly half of PayPal’s payments volume was international in 2014.

The move comes on the heels of PayPal’s purchase of Paydiant, which designs digital payment systems and loyalty programs targeted to customers in brick and mortar retail stores. PayPal spent $800 million to acquire enterprise payments company Braintree (and Venmo) in 2013.

The spree is likely to continue. Exits from the red hot world of venture-backed payment startups are exploding, with 30 exits in the past year, according to data firm CB Insights.  With the extra cash on PayPal’s balance sheet, it looks like it’s poised to make even more offers.