, 2022-05-18 10:06:07,
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey addresses students during a town hall at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in New Delhi, India, November 12, 2018.
Anushree Fadnavis | Reuters
Block executives no longer want the firm to be seen as a payments pure play.
The San Francisco-based company held its first investor day in five years Wednesday, where the C-suite made its case to Wall Street that the money app, along with its crypto and music-streaming businesses, should be valued as an “ecosystem” instead.
“Calling Block a payments company is like calling Amazon a bookseller,” CFO Amrita Ahuja told CNBC in a phone interview. “We’ve grown in so many different ways across multiple dimensions.”
Co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey, who formerly ran Twitter, kicked off Wednesday’s presentation with a keynote on the evolution of Block and bitcoin’s role in it going forward. It’s “difficult” to fit a company like Block into a single category, he said.
“We are no longer just a payments company,” Dorsey said during the livestreamed event. “A lot has changed since our last investor day.”
Square was founded in 2009 and made its name by creating a credit card reader for mobile phones. The company expanded its scope to peer-to-peer payments and bank-like products with Cash App. It also acquired Afterpay and Jay-Z’s Tidal music streaming service. The company also operates an FDIC-insured bank, and it offers stock and cryptocurrency trading.
Square’s corporate renaming to Block was meant in part to reflect that widening aperture and broader plans around crypto and blockchain.
While fintechs were among the best performers during the coronavirus pandemic, Block and its peers have been pummeled in 2022 amid rising interest rates. Ark’s Fintech Innovation ETF, a basket of fintech names, is down about 55%…
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