Buy now, pay later (BNPL) company Klarna has landed $639 million in venture funding. In a Thursday (June 10) announcement, the company said it would use the new funds to expand internationally and further capture retail customers.
The deal values Klarna, based in Sweden, at $45.6 billion, per the news release. The company calls itself “the highest-valued” privately held financial technology (FinTech) company in Europe and the second-highest worldwide.
Klarna has enjoyed rapid growth in the decade since its founding, particularly in its expansion in the U.S. The rise of BNPL plans last year, driven by COVID-19 and a big shift to online shopping, gave the company a big boost.
“Consumers continue to reject interest- and fee-laden revolving credit,” said Klarna Founder and CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski. “Klarna’s more transparent and convenient alternatives align with evolving global consumer preferences.”
The new funding round was led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2, per the release, with additional participation from existing investors Adit Ventures, Honeycomb Asset Management and WestCap Group. Klarna’s other investors include Sequoia Capital, SilverLake, Dragoneer, Permira, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Bestseller Group, Ant Group, Northzone and GIC (Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund), as well as funds and accounts managed by BlackRock and HMI.
“Klarna’s growth is founded on a deep understanding of how the purchasing behaviors of consumers are changing — an evolution which we believe is accelerating,” said Yanni Pipilis, managing partner for SoftBank Investment Advisers. “Klarna has already successfully expanded into the U.S. and we are excited to continue supporting the team in bringing the next generation of financial services to new markets.”
In the U.K., Klarna has begun offering a new shopping feature that gives users the ability to buy products interest-free using its app at any online merchant even if they’re not partnered with the BNPL firm.