Global card network Visa has officially announced as of yesterday (June 27) news that it will be investing an undisclosed amount in Klarna AB, the payments technology firm from Sweden.
Klarna serves 60 million consumers and 70,000 retailers worldwide — and, according to a released statement by Visa, shares a common vision with the card network of accelerating online and mobile commerce.
“Klarna has demonstrated an expertise in consumer credit and online purchasing, and together, we share a vision for how today’s online and mobile commerce experiences can be as simple as they are in the real world,” said Jim McCarthy, executive vice president, innovation and strategic partnerships, Visa Inc. “Visa is committed to partnering with a new generation of partners and payment providers to bring secure online commerce to many more consumers in Europe. We look forward to working more closely with Klarna to accomplish this.”
The Klarna AB investment comes as one in a recent string of strategic investments Visa has made in technology-oriented payment providers over the last several years. Since 2014, Visa has invested in Stripe and Square Inc., as well as digital wallet startup LoopPay Inc. (which went on to be bought up by Samsung for $250 million).
Visa has also looked to become a fuller collaborator with FinTech firms in the emerging digital payment ecosystem. Around a year ago Visa struck a deal with one-time rival PayPal, a partnership that the two firms recently announced is expanding on a global basis.
And it’s Visa recently expanding vision of the collaborative future of digital commerce that made it a natural fit for Klarna, according to CEO and co-founder Sebastian Siemiatkowski.
“The Visa and Klarna partnership is a natural fit. We both understand consumer credit and the value of consumer centricity in developing innovative payments technology solutions. Klarna continually strives to offer the most advanced choice of payment solutions for our merchants and give consumers the smoothest buying experiences. Partnering with Visa will give us the opportunity to strengthen our global presence and product portfolio by leveraging our combined assets. We are excited about the possibilities of what we can do together.”
Before the Visa announcement went public at Money 20/20 in Copenhagen, Klarna already found itself making a starring appearance in headlines around the world with the announcement that it has been granted a full banking license by by Finansinspektionen, the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority.