Payment processing and global retail banking platform Klarna announced on Monday it has launched a small business impact initiative to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. Klarna reported it is donating $4.5 million in free services to SMEs to aid them as they re-open.
Klarna also revealed that from May 10th to 31st, SMEs may apply to receive one free year of payment services and $40,000 worth of free media services from the payment platform.
“Klarna will select 100 small businesses from the applicant pool, focusing on those that were most impacted by the pandemic, including minority and female-led businesses, to receive fee-free payment services and marketing exposure across Klarna’s ecosystem.”
David Sykes, Head of U.S. at Klarna, spoke about the initiative by stating:
“Small businesses are the lifeblood of the US economy, and it’s no secret they have been hit especially hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. With consumers shifting more of their shopping toward e-commerce, these businesses have seen higher rates of store closures, layoffs, and reduced hours and wages. As the economic recovery gains steam, Klarna is proud to offer small businesses the support, visibility and flexibility needed to make a successful comeback.”
Klarna went on to add that by donating these services to small businesses, it will enable them to unlock a new customer base, gain greater exposure and product visibility, and build brand affinity through relevant content curation, all with a “high level of independence and control.”
As previously reported, Klarna was founded in 2005 offers products and services to consumers and retailers within payments, social shopping, and personal finances. It enables consumers to make open payments quickly, easily, and securely; immediately, delayed, or in installments. The platform notably works with over 250,000 retailers including in Germany H&M, Spotify, MediaMarkt, Expedia, Nike, and Deutsche Bahn.
Klarna also recently raised $1 billion through its equity funding round to accelerate international expansion and further capture global retail growth. Klarna revealed that the round, which subscribed four times the amount it originally sought to raise, included a combination of new and existing investors. The company’s valuation is now $31 billion and it is claiming to be the highest-valued private fintech in Europe and second-highest worldwide.