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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

Go deeper

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
7 mins ago - Economy & Business

Why it's so hard to tax wealth

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The wealth tax that wasn't a wealth tax isn't even a tax, now. The Democrats had a meticulously constructed 107-page proposal to pay for a large chunk of their spending plans with a tax on billionaires, but it died ignobly on Wednesday, the same day it was unveiled.

Why it matters: The dream of a wealth tax will never die as it so neatly generates revenue by reducing inequality. But there are three main reasons why that dream is likely to remain just a dream for the foreseeable future.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
2 hours ago - Health

Public health messaging lessons for the next pandemic

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

"Be first, be right, be credible" is the mantra of public health experts in a crisis. It's difficult to argue that the health community has regularly managed to be any of those three during COVID-19.

Why it matters: A pandemic isn't just a medical emergency — it's also a communications emergency. The U.S. public health establishment, hamstrung by bad data and political interference, has struggled with the latter.

How Hertz is fighting to stay relevant

A Hertz car rental counter in the Miami International Airport. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

In the span of less than a week, Hertz has made three big strategic moves intended to keep the car rental giant from fading into oblivion.

Why it matters: Ride-hailing and other mobility innovations are rapidly changing the way people get from A to B, posing an existential threat to traditional car rental services.