Boku CEO Jon Prideaux: “The Payment Ecosystem Is Fragmenting”

With traditional banking giants and fintech startups continuing to crowd the payment services playing field, consumers now have an ever-increasing number of ways to make purchases. According to Jon Prideaux, Chief Executive Officer of mobile payments firm Boku, that trend is only going to increase in the future.

In an interview with CNBC, Prideaux contrasted his company’s work with now-established companies such as Stripe and Block, explaining that Boku is not “riding on the card rail” but is instead paving a new way forward by helping users make payments with nothing more than a phone number. The results of this approach speak for themselves: Boku’s revenue and stock valuation have skyrocketed over the last two years as the company taps into the enormous market for mobile wallets.

Become a Subscriber

Please purchase a subscription to continue reading this article.

Subscribe Now

While Boku’s financial success bespeaks a company with its finger on the pulse of the digital payments market, in many ways Prideaux lives up to his reputation as an unconventional figure in the industry. Among other things, Prideaux sees a lot of Boku’s future in web3 but is relatively dismissive of the utility of crypto.

“Crypto is a terrible method for payments on mobile. It’s incredibly slow. It’s incredibly computer-intensive,” Prideaux said. At the same time, he acknowledged that further down the road, crypto might lead to still more fragmentation in the payment ecosystem with the development of payment technology that is completely distinct from modern mobile payments.