American Express Co. today announced it will acquire for $300 million Revolution Money, a Revolution LLC company that AOL co-founder Steve Case launched in 2007. Revolution Money processes payments over the Internet without transmitting names or account numbers, and cardholders use a personal identification number to authorize transactions online. The RevolutionCard also charges merchants 0.5% of purchases—about one-third the cost to accept a network-branded credit card. The company also supports online person-to-person payment accounts that are FDIC-insured, and the service is well-suited for social and instant-messaging networks, AmEx said in a statement. Revolution Money also issues a prepaid card linked to those accounts that cardholders can use to initiate ATM cash withdrawals and for point-of-sale purchases. "Revolution Money has a lot of room to grow as it competes head to head with other online and person-to-person payment providers," AmEx Chairman and CEO Kenneth I. Chenault said in a statement. "We are committed to using our global brand recognition, marketing reach and network expertise to help reach a critical mass of customers." Jason Hogg, found and CEO of Revolution Money, will continue as president and CEO. "Since our inception, our sole goal has been to build a payments platform that can help transform the industry," Hogg said in a statement. "Becoming part of American Express will enable us to reach that goal by scaling our technology and business and providing even greater consumer benefits." As part of AmEx, Revolution Money would develop reloadable prepaid products for new market segments, introduce new products for cardmembers who use other alternative-payment systems, create payment alternatives for social-media sites and develop mobile payments in the United States, AmEx says, citing intentions also to expand Revolution Money's services to the international market. AmEx expects the transaction, which is subject to regulatory review, to close in the first quarter of 2010.

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