Installment payment platform Sezzle on Friday (Feb. 26) reported record results for 2020, with underlying merchant sales (UMS) up 250.8 percent and total income up 272.1 percent year over year.
“We are excited about the momentum in our business reflected in the velocity of signups for both consumers and merchants,” Sezzle Co-Founder, Executive Chair and CEO Charlie Youakim said in the earnings announcement. He added, “2021 is off to a good start,” since the firm’s January UMS of $117.8 million was a record and 65 percent above its 2020 average.
“We are also pleased to provide UMS guidance for Sezzle to achieve an annualized run rate UMS of US$2.5 billion by the end of 2021.”
The company said merchant fees for 2020 increased 266.9 percent year over year and active merchants totaled more than 26,000 as of Dec. 31, an increase of 166.6 percent. In January, active merchants reached over 29,000. In 2019, over 70 percent of new active merchants came from inbound inquiries. A year later, it grew to more than 90 percent.
In 2020, the startup added over 1.3 million active consumers, with the fourth quarter breaking records with over 438,000 new users. Another 126,000 consumers joined in January 2021.
Known for its buy now, pay later (BNPL) installments, Sizzle said it is increasing its focus on green and social good initiatives this year, which aligns with its status as a public benefit corporation. Headquartered in Minneapolis, Minn., Sezzle was founded in 2016 and offers a payment platform that facilitates fast, secure, seamless payments between consumers and retailers.
In September, Sezzle teamed with Target to offer BNPL payments to its retail and eCommerce shoppers. The pilot is temporary and there is no permanent partnership. BNPL has escalated in popularity due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The BNPL market is forecast to be worth $352 billion by 2024, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence. In PYMNTS Provider Ranking of Alternative Credit Apps, Klarna ranked first, followed by Affirm, Quadpay, Afterpay and Sezzle.
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