PayPal today announced a worldwide programme that will provide discounts to tech start-ups using its payment platform.

PayPal said the aim of its Blueprint programme is to help the next generation of mobile and web start-ups grow and succeed. 

Under the initiative, Paypal will waiver its processing fees up to $50,000 (£31,000) for start-ups over an 18 month period. It will also provide support to developers through partnerships with tech accelerators based in EMEA and North America.

In order to qualify for the programme, start-ups must be nominated by PayPal or one of its accelerator partners. These include 500Startups, Seedcamp and Elevator. They must also make less than $3 million (£1.9 million) in annual revenue and be less than five years old.

Stan Chundovsky, head of growth and special projects at PayPal, said: “Every penny matters when people are starting and running a new company. PayPal itself was a very small start-up company just 15 years ago. We understand how hard it is to get on your feet, which is why we have created the Blueprint programme, to offer help and expertise to the next generation of developer startups.”

Christen O'Brien, partner at 500Startups, said the programme will give its start-ups additional tools and support "to help turn a great idea into the next successful mobile or web company".

PayPal boasted that it has the power to connect start-ups with 137 million active PayPal account holders and 15,000 financial institutions in 193 markets around the world.