Rob Eleveld. (Whitepages photo)

The news: Financial giant Mastercard announced today that it will acquire Seattle startup Ekata for $ 850 million.

Ekata’s background: The company sells identity verification products to help more than 2,000 companies including Postmates, Alaska Airlines, and Lyft differentiate between good and bad players. The company was spun off from Whitepages in 2019 and employs around 200 people in offices in Seattle, Amsterdam, Singapore and Budapest.

Rob Eleveld, who became CEO of Whitepages in 2016, is CEO of Ekata. Whitepages founder Alex Algard is chairman of Ekata and Whitepages and Hiya, another whitepages spinout.

What’s next? Mastercard said it will use Ekata’s technology to “provide a broader identity service that enables real-time decision making, from opening a new account to helping merchants assess potential frauds before approving a payment transaction. ” The deal is expected to be closed within six …

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