Inspire Commerce, which is working on a universal financial transaction technology platform, has raised a $500,000 seed round from Axia and The Story Stock Exchange. The company plans to use the funds for the development and deployment of its InspirePay.com service and the .pay framework.

“From friends and family, to the Story Stock Fund and more sophisticated AngelList investors like Adii Pienaar of WooThemes, and now strategic investors like Axia, we’re thrilled to close out our first round of funding,” CEO Mark Fischer said.

Axia CEO Randy Clark said his company was “pleased” to support Inspire’s .pay framework and the creation of its “open, shared protocols”.

InspirePay, the first application built on top of the .pay framework, ostensibly provides a “more personal way” to accept payments from anyone, for anything and via any payment provider. The service currently supports Dwolla, Mastercard, American Express, Visa, Sage Payment Solutions, Discover, PayPal and Authorize.net. Users create a custom payment page. Custom URLs with the payment amount can then be sent out.

Given the amount of, well, money to be made in the digital payment sector, it’s no surprise that Inspire Commerce had a successful round. The space is growing rapidly – Dwolla has been active, recently partnering up with Reddit on a charitable giving program. Meanwhile, Square, the mobile payment startup from Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, recently signed a landmark partnership with Starbucks that includes a $25 million investment from the coffee giant.

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