Klarna, a Swedish online payment service provider with headquarters in Stockholm, raised $650 million in an equity funding round, which values the whole company $10.65 billion. Klarna claims that the valuation ranks it as the highest-valued private fintech in Europe and the 4th worldwide.
The funding round was led by Silver Lake, a technology investment firm, alongside GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, as well as funds and accounts managed by BlackRock and HMI Capital. Concurrently, other investors have acquired shares from existing shareholders. The funding will help Klarna grow and “accelerate its strong momentum across all markets,” especially in the U.S. where the company has more than 9 million customers.
Klarna’s direct-to-consumer app has more than 12 million monthly active users worldwide. The app features a buy now, pay later shopper loyalty program called Vibe. Vibe is currently available to consumers in the U.S. and will soon be launched in other markets. The company said that it has seen a surge in demand, adding more than 35,000 retailers during the first half to its network of more than 200,000 partners.
Klarna cited a McKinsey & Company survey stating that more than 75 percent of consumers have tried new brands, places to shop or methods of shopping during the Covid-19 pandemic and that 82 percent of those who have tried a new digital shopping method intend to continue using it. Klarna stressed that its volumes and revenues for the first half grew by 44 percent and 36 percent year-on-year to more than $22 billion and $466 million respectively.
Klarna has made significant inroads into providing short-term instalment solutions to the footwear industry, working with brands and companies such as VF Corp.’s brand Timberland, the Scottish footwear retailer Schuh, Adidas and its subsidiary Reebok, Clarks and Shoe Carnival.