Belvo, the LatAm company specializing in open finance, is taking decisive steps to enter the payments sector in Brazil.
A few weeks after receiving authorization from the Brazilian Central Bank to operate in the South American country as a Payment Initiation Service Provider (PISP), Belvo is buying 100% of the fintech Skilopay.
With this acquisition, whose terms were not disclosed, Belvo plans to expand its payments product portfolio, which today includes initiation via PIX within the open finance framework. And Skilopay, a fintech founded four years ago in the interior of the state of Bahia, Brazil, should provide a shortcut for the company to expand its operations as a PISP.
Victor Silva, the founder of Skilopay, joins Belvo as a minority shareholder.
Offering a complete set of payment solutions
This is the first acquisition in the open finance platform’s history, created in 2019 by Pablo Viguera and Oriol Tintoré.
“Thanks to Skilopay’s expertise around PIX payments, we can now offer a more complete set of payment solutions to our customers in Brazil,” said Albert Morales, Belvo’s general manager, in a public statement n Brazil.
“Our aim is to provide companies with easier ways of receiving, holding, and sending money through account-to-account payment rails in Latin America. This acquisition brings us one step closer to achieving that goal.”
This is a big step in Belvo’s transformation plan. Ten months ago, the company received a license from the Institution of Electronic Payment Funds (IFPE) of Mexico’s National Banking and Securities Commission (CNBV) — which gave the platform the green light to start offering bank-to-bank payment processing and issuing capabilities to its Mexican clients.
With origins in Mexico, Belvo expanded its operations to Colombia shortly after its founding, and in 2020 it arrived in Brazil, which is currently considered its primary market.
Belvo’s consolidation in Brazilian market
A couple of years ago, the Brazilian Central Bank started developing initiatives to generate greater adherence of banks and fintechs to its open finance system. With this, Belvo began to gain size in the market, offering access to users’ financial data so that institutions could analyze and offer more suitable products to their customers according to individual financial needs.
The company has essential clients in Brazil, such as Mercado Livre, Conta Azul, Serasa Experian, Rappi, Itaú, and Bradesco.
According to Belvo, two initial products will be launched in the coming months with this partnership in Brazil: the inclusion of instant payment from the PIX system and the permission to receive and send money using the fintech’s account.
“We’re thrilled about this acquisition which demonstrates the tremendous work that Skilopay’s team has put into building our solution and which will be key to helping Belvo achieve its mission of bringing more efficiency to the account-to-account payment ecosystem in the region,” said Skilopay founder Victor Silva.
Jorge C. Carrasco is a Contributing Reporter at Fintech Nexus. He reports on fintech, economy, banking, startups, and technology, covering the most impactful stories from a Latin American perspective.
He has contributed to several international publications, such as Foreign Policy, The Spectator Australia, Estadão, Época, Washington Examiner, and Quillette. Originally from Havana, Cuba, he is now based in Brazil.