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VC-Backed Braintree Names Nigel Morris to Board

Braintree, a Chicago-based provider of online payments technology, has announced that Capital One co-founder Nigel Morris has joined the company’s board of directors, and that he invested in the company following a $34 million investment from Accel Partners earlier this year. Braintree closed its Series A round, led by Accel, in June.

Braintree ( ), an online payments provider that powers commerce for many of the fastest-growing and most discerning online, mobile and social businesses in the world, announced that Capital One co-founder Nigel Morris has joined the company’s board of directors and invested in the company following a $34 million investment from Accel Partners earlier this year.

Morris, the managing partner of QED Investors, is best known as the co-founder of Capital One Financial Services, where his leadership and creative use of data analytics helped the company grow to one of the largest issuers of Visa and MasterCard in the world. Morris co-developed a method that allowed Capital One to fine-tune card products and pricing strategies for customers by blending together analytics, risk and mass marketing to target customers not typically offered credit cards. During his 10-year tenure, Capital One’s sales grew at a compound annual rate of more than 40 percent, leading to revenue of $11 billion and a market capitalization of $18 billion. Upon his retirement in 2004, Capital One had expanded into the United Kingdom and Canada, employed 15,000 people and managed over $80 billion of loans for 50 million customers.

“Nigel Morris is a seasoned innovator in the credit card and payments industry. Braintree is delighted to have him as a member of the board of directors,” said Bill Ready, CEO of Braintree. “Nigel pioneered changes in the issuing side of the credit card industry at Capital One, which grew under his leadership from an emerging start-up into an established public company valued at over $18 billion. We are thrilled to have Nigel and his industry and company-building experience at Braintree as we continue to disrupt the merchant side of the global payments industry.”

Founded in 2007 by Bryan Johnson, Braintree’s chairman, the company has grown rapidly and now is processing more than $4 billion in annual credit card volume. Braintree’s client list reads like a Who’s Who of influential technology companies, including LivingSocial, 37signals, OpenTable, GitHub, Airbnb, Heroku, Engine Yard, Animoto, Shopify and HotelTonight. Braintree’s explosive growth earned it a spot on the 2011 Inc. 500 list as the nation’s 47th fastest-growing private company, with a three-year growth rate of 4,200 percent. Braintree ranked first in the online payments industry. Braintree attracted a $34 million Series A investment from Accel Partners in June 2011 after Johnson profitably bootstrapped the company for four years. Accel is one of the most respected venture firms in the world and has invested in such well-known companies as Facebook, Groupon, Dropbox and Rovio, the creator of Angry Birds.

“Nigel Morris and Braintree are a kindred match,” said Ryan Sweeney, a partner with Accel Partners who also serves on Braintree’s board of directors. “Both have approached the credit card industry with ‘outside-the-box,’ disruptive solutions and both know what it takes to provide best-of-breed products and service to customers globally. We welcome Nigel’s expertise and vision, which will be especially valuable as Braintree innovates for sustained growth and continues its international expansion.”

“Braintree is a disruptive force in the online payments industry, and I see parallels to how Capital One approached the credit card industry,” said Morris. “Capital One attacked the market with a novel use of technology and analytics. Braintree is disrupting the market with payments technology built specifically for Web 2.0, mobile and social merchants. Braintree helps developers and merchants to begin accepting payments in minutes rather than months, allowing them to focus on their business rather than the nuances of online payments.”

About Braintree Braintree helps online and mobile businesses process credit card payments by providing a merchant account, payment gateway, recurring billing and credit card storage. The company is disrupting the payments industry by providing elegant tools for developers coupled with white-glove support. Founded in 2007, Braintree works with the world’s most discerning online merchants, including LivingSocial, 37signals, OpenTable and GitHub. The company is processing more than $4 billion in annual credit card volume from more than 2,000 merchants. Braintree was profitably bootstrapped for four years before accepting a $34 million investment from Accel Partners in 2011. Braintree ranked 47th in the 2011 Inc. 500. Visit us at and on Twitter @braintree.

About QED Investors QED Investors actively supports high-growth businesses that use information to compete — and win. QED’s support is tailored to the specific needs of each portfolio company and typically consists of a combination of both capital and capability. Common to all of QED’s partnerships is a shared conviction that information plays a decisive role in the success of the company, a mutual desire for a high degree of direct engagement, and a shared enthusiasm for experimentation and learning.