Stratos Universal Credit Card Will Live On — Under New Company

Just yesterday (Dec. 21), reports surfaced that the company that started the Stratos all-in-one credit card was shutting down, which looked like the end of its universal credit card.

Now, however, it appears there’s hope for the Stratos card, but it’s going to be under another company. TechCrunch reported that the startup has secured a deal with Ciright One LLC to take over the company. The agreement calls for the new company to take over all outstanding business duties of Stratos, including shipping out the cards that the company had promised consumers.

Thiago Olson, Stratos‘ co-founder, confirmed the details with TechCrunch and also confirmed that the cards will function as expected. Customer support for the credit card service is expected to resume within the next few weeks.

This agreement saves Stratos from its demise into the payments market as the company’s founders had revealed that the latest funding round fell through. The deal with Ciright One was finalized yesterday (Dec. 21). Terms of the deal, however, were not available.

Ciright One is know for its own smart credit card that comes with an auto-video playing warning that was similar to what the Stratos card mentioned. Its card, called The One, launched in November, and features buttons and a subscription service like the Stratos card. A Ciright One spokesperson told TechCrunch that it plans to keep the Stratos brand on top of its own.

Stratos was founded in 2012 by Olson and Chris Bartenstein, and has had a few successful rounds of funding, totaling $6.63 million in three rounds, which eventually ran out.

The Stratos card comes with a mag stripe reader that plugs into a smartphone that allows readers to add their cards to the Stratos app via swiping. The card, which was designed to consolidate credit cards into one single card, got some praise when it began its early entrance into the market — but then seemed to fall flat. To use Stratos, cardholders tap the device and press one of the three buttons, which allows the selection of a specific card. After that, the Stratos card works just like any other pay card and can be swiped through most retail POS.

Customers can obtain the card through a subscription service that costs $95 a year (or $149 for two). For security, the card has both bank-level data encryption and a feature that allows for it to be disabled if it is out of proximal range with its owner’s smartphone for too long. When initially launched, the company did not offer chip-and-PIN tech on its cards, but the upgrade is said to be on the way.


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