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PayPal Updates – Latest News from the Fintech Giant

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It has been a busy couple of months for the online payments provider PayPal, with sponsorship agreements, a change of CFO, an unsolicited mini-tender and even a brush with the culture wars. Join us for all the latest updates from PayPal.

Under fire for being ‘woke’

Last year PayPal found itself the target of the ire of Florida governor Ron DeSantis, who singled out the company and accused it of having a ‘woke agenda’. The alleged incident precipitating DeSantis’ latest condemnation concerned a non-profit based in Florida. Members of the organisation claimed that their PayPal account had been frozen, suggesting that PayPal did so on ideological grounds. Moms for Liberty fundraises to oppose the teaching of ‘gender ideology’ in Florida schools.

DeSantis has vowed to stop financial organisations from discriminating against clients based on their beliefs. Of course, such a thing is difficult to prove one way or the other, and PayPal have never commented publicly on the matter. The non-profit claims that shortly after DeSantis made his announcement, their account was unfrozen.

DeSantis may need to change tack if he wishes to persuade swing voters during his anticipated presidential campaign. It turns out that most Americans, and especially independent and undecided voters, are tired of the rhetoric surrounding the concept of ‘woke’, while a majority actually view the word as positive.

Blake Jorgensen steps down for good

Blake Jorgensen had been in the role of PayPal Chief Financial Officer barely a month when he had to step away for a medical leave of absence in September 2022. At the time it was expected that Mr Jorgensen would return when his health had recovered, but in March it was announced that he would be retiring from the position entirely.

Mr Jorgensen joined PayPal from video game company Electronic arts, where he had served as CFO for close to ten years. He replaced John Rainey, who left to become CFO of Walmart in May. During the interim Gabrielle Rabinovitch served as acting CFO alongside her role as senior VP of corporate finance and investor relations, and she will step back into the position for the time being. Mr Jorgensen will retain a role as a senior advisor until September 2023.

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PayPal becomes the preferred payments partner for Ticketmaster

The world’s largest events ticket selling platform, Ticketmaster, has positioned PayPal as its primary payments partner across 21 of the 29 countries in which they operate. Executive VP of PayPal Global Sales Peggy Alford cited the payment provider’s strong reputation with customers, adding that ticket buyers are almost three times as likely to complete a purchase when PayPal is an option at the checkout. High consumer trust in the platform is also a reason why PayPal casinos are so popular in the UK.

With PayPal Checkout fans can choose from various linked payment methods including debit and credit cards as well as PayPal balance. Users can also spread the cost with PayPal Pay Later, whereby ticket purchases can be paid for in instalments. In the US ticket buyers can also use the company’s social payment sharing app Venmo.

Investors advised to reject mini-tender

In February PayPal investors were urged not to tender shares to TRC Capital Corporation, which was seeking to secure 2 million common stock shares. Offering a price of $71.36 per share, which was around 4.5% under the value at the time, a successful purchase by TRC would amount to less than 1% of the total common stock.

TRC in reality is a single man, Toronto-based Lorne Albaum, who has been making mini-tenders like this for more than twenty years. This is a tactic whereby investors attempt to buy stock in small enough quantities to bypass many legalities, and at a slightly undervalued price. In this way, Albaum and others like him hope to catch some investors off-guard. This is the second time that TRC has attempted a mini-tender with PayPal, the previous occasion being in 2015.

Partnership with Phoenix Suns extended until 2026

PayPal continues and expands its partnership with the NBA team the Phoenix Suns, with a new agreement announced in April. The sponsorship deal started in 2018 and is one of the biggest in the league. The team, under the new leadership of Matt Ishbia, will continue to wear the PayPal logo on the front of their jerseys for at least another three years. In the Suns arena, the Footprint Center, PayPal is providing cutting-edge payment solutions.

Together the two organisations have committed to support local businesses and the wider community. Some of the pledges include the provision of financial literacy programs in historically underserved communities, targeted support of Native American-owned small businesses, and the donation of a portion of all jersey sales to non-profits in the area.

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