The internet and mobile economies have spawned the collaborative consumption business model, but the payments systems we have in place haven’t kept up. A company like eBay(s ebay), AirBnB, Uber and or Lyft isn’t just a single business entity but a big collection of small networked entrepreneurs, and for every single credit card transaction on their websites there are a lot of different people that need to get paid.
Online payments provider Stripe, however, is trying to solve that problem in a simple way. In a blog post on Wednesday, Stripe said it would now split transactions into multiple accounts, rather than just dump any payment into a single bank account. So take a service like Lyft: when a customer pays for a ride, the total is automatically divided between the driver and the Lyft itself. There’s no waiting for Lyft to cut you check or credit your bank account at the end of the week.
Some of Stripe’s bigger customers like Lyft, SideCar, Exec, Postmates and Shoptiques have already integrated the new payments features. But any Stripe customer can access split payments by tapping into Stripe’s updated API. For each payment recipient there a 25 cent fee per transaction.