skip to main content

Startup Fast abruptly shuts down

Payments Dive

Stripe itself has landed capital investments quickly. Founded by two Irish brothers, with dual headquarters in Dublin and San Francisco, Stripe raised $600 million last year, giving a $95 billion valuation. An earlier notable investor in Fast was Index Ventures, which also invested in the fintechs Revolut, Adyen and Plaid, among others.  

The speed of Fast’s fundraising stands out even among Silicon Valley’s successes, said Jeff Fortney,  a senior associate at payments consulting firm The Strawhecker Group. “The guy’s a great salesman,” Fortney said of Holland. “He sold Fast fast.” 

That can create an aura that attracts other investors, Fortney said. “Sometimes investors will say ‘Look Stripe’s invested in it—it must be good,’” Fortney said in an interview. Now, he’s wondering, “Where was Stripe in all this?”

Plenty of competition

Fast faced rivals that similarly soaked big investments. One of them was San Francisco-based competitor Bolt, whose CEO blasted Fast in a Twitter tirade in January. Bolt CEO Ryan Breslow unleashed a Twitter thread calling out global payments fintech Stripe and startup accelerator Y Combinator for making his company’s start difficult and singling out Fast for criticism.