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Swedish BNPL firm Klarna launches its first physical card in the UK

Swedish BNPL firm Klarna launches its first physical card in the UK

Klarna, the renowned ‘buy now, pay later’ (BPNL) Swedish fintech organization, has reportedly announced the launch of its first physical card in the United Kingdom, effectively putting a lot of pressure on credit card companies and banks.

British customers will be able to defer payments for up until 30 days while using the card in high street stores, after formerly only being able to purchase buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) items online. As per reports, the Sweden-based firm also plans to add additional payment choices to the card, such as the option to split transactions into three monthly payments.

Following its successful rollout in Sweden and Germany, Klarna revealed that it has already formed a waiting list of 400,000 customers in the United Kingdom, citing ‘high desire for a fresh approach to credit’.

The Klarna Card is part of the fintech firm's latest push to compete with big credit card banks and companies that provide consumer loans by allowing users to postpone payments in physical stores without paying interest.

Alex Marsh, Klarna UK operations head, stated that customers are rejecting loan options that carry double-digit rate of interests while enabling repayments to be postponed forever.

Marsh further expressed that with no interest as well as clear payment schedules, buy-now-pay-later has now become the viable choice for online shopping, where credit makes perfect sense. The introduction of Klarna Card in the United Kingdom extends these benefits to offline transactions, offering customers the transparency and control of BNPL for all in-store payments.

BNPL products have been criticized, with consumer group Which? recently stating that tougher protections are required to safeguard the millions of UK buyers who are unaware they are incurring debt by deferring payments.

According to Klarna, customers who are qualified to avail of the card will be given a customized spending limit, which will be modified automatically after each transaction depending on their financial history. The cap is projected to be valued hundreds of pounds instead of thousands of pounds for most clients. Credit checks are required to get approved for the card.

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