Shares of PayPal rise on 1st day of trading

NEW YORK (KRON/AP) — Shares of San Jose-based PayPal made strong gains in its first day as an independent and publicly traded company, after parting ways with eBay Inc.

On Friday, Paypal officially split with eBay, 10 months after the companies announced that they were going their separate ways.

PayPal processed $235 billion in total payment volume last year and logged revenue of about $8 billion. It plans to grow market share in mobile and online payments as well as expanding in areas like in-store payments as the company moves to capitalize on the growing digitization of money.

Trading on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange under the stock ticker “PYPL,” shares jumped $2.08, or 5.4 percent, to $40.47 on Monday.

PayPal CEO Dan Schulman and employees rung in the opening bell on the Nasdaq, while the company celebrated the listing by giving out food from food trucks in Times Square and posting passersby’s photos on Nadsaq’s seven-story digital billboard.

In an interview with The Associated Press on Monday, Schulman said that being an independent company gives PayPal the ability to work with companies that might have hesitated before the split due to its association with eBay.

“One of the big advantages for us is truly we now are world’s leading neutral third-party payments provider and that will allow us the opportunity to partner with a number of companies across the world who before the separation either directly competed with eBay or had a perceived potential conflict with eBay,” he said. “And now we are free to work with any of them.”

But similar to before the separation, the company’s focus is to grow its relationship with merchants and consumers, he added.

“We want to be much more than a proprietary button on merchants’ websites,” he said. “We want to be a full-services partner to them as they look to use mobile tech to create more intimate relationship with their customers.”

R.W. Baird analyst Colin Sebastian initiated coverage on the company with an “Outperform” rating and $45 12-month price target, meaning he expects the stock to reach $45 over the next year.

“We view PayPal as part of a select group of online platform companies that are well positioned for long-term growth and market share expansion,” he said. “More specifically, PayPal is setting the global standard for online payments with trusted consumer brands and significant scale and reach.”

Shares of eBay, also based in San Jose, rose 67 cents, or 2.4 percent to $28.57.

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