Sweden based fintech unicorn Klarna has announced that it has acquired Stockholm-based SaaS startup APPRL, which basically allows content creators and retailers to work together. This move is intended towards tapping into the immense growth potential of shopping across social media channels.
Why acquire APPRL
Though the exact financial details of the deal remained undisclosed, Klara mentions in a statement that this acquisition will help in growing the roster of retailer marketing services, powering merchant growth through the content that allows consumers to shop smarter through inspiration, reviews, customer service or product and price comparison.
Klarna’s retailer support offering currently includes a Comparison Shopping Service, an AI-driven styling engine and content creation platform, and most recently, HERO, a social shopping platform. Klarna recently acquired London and New York-based HERO, right after raising equity funding of $639M (approx €524.4M) led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2, with additional participation from existing investors Adit Ventures, Honeycomb Asset Management and WestCap Group.
APPRL will further enhance Klarna’s marketing services by allowing retailers to connect directly to relevant content creators to create social shopping content and track campaign results through Klarna, the press release reads.
Sebastian Siemiatkowski, CEO of Klarna, says, “As social shopping becomes a core element of the retail experience, we believe Klarna’s position at the centre of the shopping ecosystem is instrumental in connecting retailers to both consumers and content creators who resonate with their brand audiences. By adding APPRL to Klarna’s existing retailer support expertise, we see a huge opportunity to create an enriching and informative shopping experience for consumers everywhere while accelerating retailer growth.”
Founded by Martin Landén & Gustav Gisseldahl, APPRL is an end-to-end influencer marketing software that claims to allows content creators and brands to work together through AI, scalable technology and user-centric design.
It helps marketers discover creators, collaborate efficiently and track performance in real-time. APPRL’s platform enables consumers to shop influencer content from retailers such as Harvey Nichols, Shopbop, Dr Martens, Luisaviaroma and many more.
Its team comprises 25 social media experts, data scientists, strategists, engineers, marketers and innovators, working from the company’s headquarters in Stockholm and offices in London and São Paulo.
APPRL is backed by Spintop Ventures and angels with experience from companies as Google, Nike, Klarna, Rebtel and more.
Founded in 2005, Klarna claims to have 90M global active users and 2M transactions a day. It has over 250,000 global retail partners, including H&M, Saks, Sephora, Macys, IKEA, Expedia Group, Samsung, ASOS, Peloton, Ralph Lauren, Abercrombie & Fitch, Nike and Shein.
Klarna is one of the most highly valued private fintechs globally, with a valuation of $45.6B. Active in 17 markets. Klarna has been backed by Sequoia Capital since 2010 and, more recently, SilverLake, Dragoneer, Bestseller Group, Permira, Ant Group, HMI Capital, TCV, NorthZone, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Merian Chrysalis Investment Company Limited, funds and accounts managed by BlackRock amongst others.
Reportedly acquires Stocard
Recently, the company reportedly acquired German digital wallet fintech Stocard for around €110M. This was first reported by FinanceFwd. However, neither of the companies have confirmed this development. Silicon Canals has reached out to Klarna to comment but is yet to hear back.