Apr 8, 2020 - Economy & Business

SoFi acquires payments platform Galileo for $1.2 billion

Photo: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

SoFi, a personal finance company most recently valued at $4.8 billion, agreed to buy Galileo, a Salt Lake City-based financial services API and payments platform, for $1.2 billion in stock and cash.

Why it matters: This reflects how SoFi has expanded far beyond its student loan refinancing roots, and also how fintech remains relatively immune to the pandemic's economic impact.

Details: Multiple reports are that SoFi financed the deal via $875 million in equity, $75 million in cash, and $275 million in debt.

  • ROI: Galileo last year announced a $77 million Series A round led by Accel, but was founded in 2000 and previously raised from such firms as Mercato Partners and Kickstart Seed Fund.

The bottom line: "The acquisition will, in theory, give SoFi leverage over the likes of Robinhood and Chime, which compete with SoFi, since they depend on Galileo for day-to-day operations. Among the services Galileo provides are account setup, funding, direct deposit, early paycheck direct deposit, and bill pay." — Jeff John Roberts, Fortune

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Mark Zuckerberg: Social networks should not be "the arbiter of truth"

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg argued on CNBC's "Squawk Box" Thursday that social media platforms should not police political speech, and that "people should be able to see what politicians say.”

Why it matters: Zuckerberg was responding to Twitter's decision this week to fact-check a pair of President Trump's tweets that claimed that mail-in ballots are "substantially fraudulent." Twitter's label, which directs users to "get the facts" about mail-in voting, does not censor Trump's tweets.

House Democrats pull FISA reauthorization bill

Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

House Democrats pulled legislation Thursday that would have renewed expired domestic surveillance laws and strengthened transparency and privacy protections amid broad opposition from President Trump, House GOP leadership and progressive Democrats.

Why it matters: The failure to reauthorize the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) comes as Trump continues to attack the intelligence community, which he claims abused the law to surveil his 2016 campaign and Trump administration officials.

U.S. GDP drop revised lower to 5% in the first quarter

Data: Bureau of Economic Analysis; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. economy shrunk by an annualized 5% in the first quarter — worse than the initially estimated 4.8% contraction — according to revised figures released by the government on Thursday.

Why it matters: It's the worst quarterly decline since 2008 and shows a huge hit as the economy was just beginning to shut down because of the coronavirus. Economists are bracing for the second quarter's figures to be the worst ever — with some projecting an annualized decline of around 40%.

2 hours ago - Economy & Business