Swedish buy now, pay later firm Klarna has raised $1 billion in funding, becoming the highest-valued private FinTech in Europe.
The investment round, which values Klarna at $31 billion, was led by a combination of new and existing investors.
The company’s flexible payment product is currently offered in more than 17 countries by over 250,000 retail partners, which includes players such as Macy’s, IKEA, Abercrombie & Fitch, Nike and Expedia.
Some 90 million consumers currently use Klarna and its growing user base in the U.S. is expected to outpace Germany, its top market, by the end of this year. Last week, the company said that it had signed 20 of the top 100 U.S. brands and had attracted a million new customers a month in the last quarter of 2020, Bloomberg reported.
“What definitely has accelerated and changed is the success in the U.S. market,” Klarna’s Chief Executive Officer Sebastian Siemiatkowski told Bloomberg. Investors are seeing Klarna surpassing its competitors and that is changing the perspective around the company’s business, which in turn has helped drive its valuation, he added.
The FinTech plans to use some of the funding to acquire technology players to deliver a faster and more cost-friendly shopping experience to its customers. Siemiatkowski said the company was not keen on acquiring its competitors due to the complexities associated with integrating the services. The company also reportedly plans to donate $10 million to organizations focused on fighting climate change.
Siemiatkowski hinted at the potential of the company going public in 2021.