Eyeo, the parent company behind Adblock Plus, has acquired Flattr, an online micropayments company set up by Pirate Bay founder Peter Sunde in 2010 which lets internet users donate money to the content they consume online.
The two companies first partnered last May, creating a product named Flattr Plus that automates the process of paying content creators, spreading individuals' monthly budgets based on their browsing history.
“Over the past 10 months, we collaborated closely and in fact, became one team with a joint vision. So it was just natural to remove the remaining structural barriers and make it official,” said Flattr's Sunde. “We share almost identical values of making the internet safe and fair for everyone. We’re excited to continue our work on the Flattr project to give back control to the users of the internet. They should decide how they want to use the internet and how they want to support the content they enjoy. The internet is a decentralized network with unlimited sources of creativity. This free and open internet needs a payment option that reflects these core values.”
The Flattr team will continue operations in Malmö, Sweden, with Sunde acting as advisor and co-founder Linus Olsson continuing to head operation and implementation.
It's not clear what exactly has changed with the acquisition. The earlier deal involved Eyeo investing an undisclosed amount in Flattr, and it has likewise declined to disclose the terms of this acquisition. Eyeo has only described the move in the broadest terms, with founder Till Faida saying it would help the company “finalise our vision of enabling hundreds of millions of users to choose how they want to pay for the content they consume”.