Not quite a year after rebranding itself with a new name, Paya is coming into its own as a partner-centric company, according to Greg Cohen, Paya’s president.

Now, to continue to grow and move forward in the niche it’s carved out for itself, it needed to add capabilities, including the ability to disburse funds in complex ways. It needed a payment facilitator.

Paya is a payments platform provider that was acquired last year by private equity firm GTCR when it was known as Sage Payment Solutions. Earlier this month, it announced that it had acquired Stewardship Technology, a PF primarily serving faith-based organizations and nonprofits.

The acquisition of Stewardship helped open the nonprofit and faith-based sector as a vertical for Paya. Stewardship already has a strong presence and brand recognition in that market.

The company “had been in the faith-based segment for almost 10 years building a brand,” Cohen told PaymentFacilitator. “It had momentum and was growing, as opposed to just being an interesting product that we would have to figure out how to grow.”

Within the faith-based market, only about 20% of giving is currently done electronically, meaning there is plenty of space to grow, Cohen said.

But in addition to offering access to an underserved vertical, Stewardship offered some capabilities through its PF model that the company would be able to incorporate into its platform and offer to other clients as well.

“You start to realize that the boarding piece and the simple application are a piece of it, but these new ways that we do settlement really are constrained in the legacy settlement systems,” Cohen said.

“The systems that are out there really get in the way of some of these types of verticals, where you need card and ACH and there are numerous people to pay downstream. That becomes really hard using a traditional processing platform. And so it was part of the assessment by the private equity firm and management that in order to compete in the long term, in these segments, this was a needed capability for the platform.”

Last month, the company launched its Paya Connect platform, which enables developers to integrate customized payments capabilities into their own solutions.

“I think that’s the interesting piece about our business, that we’ve positioned ourselves to operate in three or four different business models based upon the way that the software provider wants to go to market and what experiences they want to create,” Cohen said.

Paya expects to have the new capabilities integrated into its platform by the first quarter of next year, Cohen said.