Stripe Wants To Make It Easier For African Entrepreneurs To Set Up In The US

Written by Kevin Mwanza

San Francisco-based online payment processing startup, Stripe, wants to make it easier for entrepreneurs from Africa and other developing regions to set up their small businesses in the United States without going through bureaucratic hurdles.

Stripe is the payment processing system which powers Apple Pay as well as the payment systems of Twitter and Facebook and hundreds of startups in 24 countries where the company operates.

According to The New York Times, Stripe’s new entity named Stripe Atlas will help foreign entrepreneurs from Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and parts of Asia, incorporate their companies in Delaware and get bank accounts in the US that will help them accept payment globally.

“A majority of the growth over the next 10 years will come from these underserved markets,” Patrick Collison, co-founder and chief executive of Stripe, told The New York Times last week.

“That includes about 6.2 billion people we don’t reach yet, and that’s a huge missed opportunity if we didn’t try to do so.”

The US has one of the best banking infrastructure and in some cases acts as a tax haven for foreign companies.

To offer this service, Stripe has teamed up with a number of partners including Silicon Valley Bank, law firm Orrick and consultancy PwC.

Stripe Atlas, which is still in beta form, will also be developed in other countries other than the US in the future, Collison said during a session at the ongoing Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

The price of using Atlas will be a one-off fee of $500.

The service could however irk developing nations governments that don’t have double taxation treaties with the US, as it will help entrepreneurs to deny their home economies much needed tax revenue.