The leading payment provider Klarna Bank AB has confirmed that it is acquiring Close Brothers Retail Finance (CBRF) to “significantly strengthen” its position in the UK market for retail financing and to enable it to accelerated growth and expansion of its consumer offering.

Michael Rouse, chief commercial officer of Klarna said in a statement: “We are delighted to welcome CBRF to Klarna, the complementary talents and propositions will help accelerate Klarna’s leadership in the payments market. What CBRF have achieved to date in the UK is impressive but together we can invest in realising the full potential of the business.

“Outside of the core offering in retail finance, we immediately recognised a shared commitment in building deep partnerships with our merchants so their business thrives and an unrelenting focus on the customer experience.”

Rouse added: “By combining capabilities and leveraging CBRF market knowledge, we are confident that we can offer even more innovative and flexible payment solutions to our merchants and customers in the UK and across markets.”

Founded in 2014, Close Brothers Retail Finance has established itself as a provider of omnichannel retail finance with over 600 active merchants in the UK, including brands such as Mothercare and Cotswold Outdoor.

Close Brothers Retail Finance point of sale finance products allow shoppers to pay over time in simple, fixed monthly payments, which helps merchants convert more browsers into buyers, uplift sales and provide a better customer experience.

Alex Marsh, managing director of CBRF added: “We are thrilled to join an industry leader like Klarna and believe this is a great strategic fit rooted in a shared mission and culture. We at CBRF have transformed retail finance in the UK over the past four years and are extremely proud of what we have accomplished.

“Together with Klarna, we have the exciting opportunity to further develop our capabilities and deliver even more services and value to merchants to help them succeed. We are now focussing on a smooth integration and seamless continuity of our offering to merchants and customers.”

The acquisition is subject to approval by the Financial Supervisory Authority of Sweden (Finansinspektionen).

Klarna was founded in Sweden in 2005 and has become one of Europe’s leading payment providers and a licensed bank, giving online consumers the option to ‘Pay now’, ‘Pay later’ or ‘Slice it’ (pay over time). It has 90,000 merchants including Asos, Adidas, JD Sports, and Arcadia.


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