Klarna builds closer ties with Alibaba as Alipay owner Ant Financial takes a minority stake

Swedish fintech scale-up Klarna has brought yet another investor on board as Ant Financial Services Group, the Alibaba affiliate that owns payments and lifestyle platform Alipay, takes a minority stake for an undisclosed sum. It’s almost like having Snoop Dogg invest wasn’t enough for them.

The investment by Alibaba’s Ant Financial is one thing, but more interesting is the strategic partnership that comes with it as Klarna’s solutions for both consumers and merchants will be introduced more broadly within the Chinese tech giant’s ecosystem.

From the press release:

“It will deepen ongoing collaborations between Klarna and Alipay, which currently enables shoppers at AliExpress, the global retail online marketplace of Alibaba Group, to use Klarna’s popular ‘Pay later’ solution across multiple markets.”

The company says it currently boasts a customer base of 85 million consumers and that it powers more than 200,000 retailers and e-commerce platforms globally, including Alipay but also H&M (also a Klarna investor), IKEA, Adidas, Farfetch, Spotify, Samsung and Nike.

Klarna co-founder and CEO Sebastian Siemiątkowski says: “For too long consumers have had to endure non-intuitive, boring and overly complex services when shopping both online and offline. At the heart of this cooperation between Klarna and Alipay is a shared ambition of innovating truly superior shopping experiences and creating destinations of inspiration for consumers across the world.”

Founded in 2005, Klarna is currently valued at around $5.5 billion and one of the largest private fintech companies in the world.

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