London-based Divido has reeled in $30 million in venture funding led by banking giants HSBC and ING. The company offers a buy now, pay later (BNPL) platform for the retail finance sector.
In a press release, Divido said it would use the cash “to fuel international expansion while continuing to build out its market-leading platform for lenders and merchants.”
“The retail finance market is in a period of exponential growth, expected to hit $2.5 trillion next year,” said Christer Holloman, Divido’s founder and CEO. He added that Divido has “created a global standard for banks, retailers and payment partners to connect seamlessly to offer buy now, pay later to consumers.”
Divido offers a “white-label platform,” which means it is a business-to-business (B2B) product that is not directly offered to consumers. Launched in 2014, Divido now has more than 1,000 clients and operates in 10 markets across two continents.
“There is clear demand for retail finance across the globe, both from customers and merchants,” said Catherine Zhou, HSBC global head of venture, digital innovation and partnerships. “The Divido platform enables lenders to serve customers in this area with a compelling, well-managed proposition.”
Divido “has a strong strategic fit with ING’s consumer finance business,” said Jan Willem Nieuwenhuize, ING Ventures managing director. “We see Divido as an innovator at the very forefront of the market.”
Also on board with Divido’s latest funding round were the Sony Innovation Fund by IGV (Innovation Growth Ventures Co.), SBI Investment, OCS, Global Brain and DG Daiwa Ventures, along with existing investors DN Capital, Dawn Capital, IQ Capital and Amex Ventures.
For consumers with subprime credit scores (18 percent), a thin credit file (11 percent) or no file at all (11 percent), getting access to mainstream credit can be a difficult and expensive proposition, if it is possible at all. This can result in a cash-flow crunch when unexpected expenses pop up.
Sezzle‘s Chief Technology Officer Killian Brackey told PYMNTS that its BNPL offering is like “training wheels for traditional credit products,” designed to get consumers in the habit of paying their purchases down every two weeks and to offer safeguards against overspending.
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