Klarna swoops on London-based online retail start-up

Klarna swoops on London-based online retail start-up

Klarna offers shoppers interest-free borrowing for online shopping without the need for a credit check.

It was founded in Stockholm in 2005 and has a string of high profile backers including Sequoia Capital and Bestseller, owned by Danish billionaire Anders Holch Povlsen. It makes most of its revenue from charging retailers for its service.

Demand for payments via Klarna increased during lockdowns. It now has more than 80 million global active users, including around seven million in the UK. Klarna’s clients in the UK include Boohoo, JD Sports and Asos.

Klarna has been criticised by some industry observers that it teaches young people to spend beyond what they can afford. The company has said it is democratising the way people shop.

In June, the co-founder and boss of Klarna, Sebastian Siemiatkowski, said he was likely to pick the US for its stock market listing.

Mr Siemiatkowski was one of the early investors in Made.com, which recently floated on the London stock market.

Klarna and HERO did not respond to requests for comment.

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