Apple is looking to build in-house new tools for a broad range of financial tasks, including payments processing, lending and fraud analysis, as a step toward building new fintech products, Bloomberg reported, citing unnamed sources.
The plan could be bad news for Apple’s fintech partners. In fact, shares of Green Dot, the bank infrastructure company used by Apple Pay, shed nearly 6% on Wednesday. Another Apple partner, CoreCard, saw its stock tumble more than 14%. Apple shares slipped fractionally in late trades.
The plan is reportedly part of a project called “Breakout,” to highlight Apple’s bid to strike out on its own in financial services. It underlines Apple’s growing interest in expanding into financial services beyond Apple Pay, the Apple Card and iMessage, as well as the financial transactions it handles via iTunes and the App Store.
The company reportedly is buying U.K. open-banking startup Credit Kudos, which would enhance Apple’s ability to offer critical data aggregation services like those offered by Finicity and Plaid. It could also strengthen the company’s market position in Europe.
One analyst speculated that the move could mean Apple is eyeing new financial services, such as the fast-growing “buy now, pay later” industry. Apple also recently introduced Tap to Pay, a new service that would let merchants use the iPhone to process payments with no extra hardware required.
The move is not likely to pose a serious challenge to Block, whose Square payment dongles remain dominant in the small and medium-sized business market. But Apple has partnered with a Block rival, Stripe, in the rollout.