Klarna buys innovative London e-commerce firm Hero
Buy-now-pay-later lender Klarna has acquired fledgling social shopping platform Hero for around £115 million, according to people familiar with the deal.
Designed to provide consumers with “inspiration, advice and immediately shoppable content produced directly from retailers’ physical stores”, Hero aims to offer a personal service to online shoppers similar to their experiences in stores. That service will now be added to Klarna’s platform of 250,000 retail partners across the world.
Klarna said the acquisition would allow in-store teams to become content creators “instantly”, offering reviews, real-time advice and “richer, more engaging and informative content” around products.
Based in London and New York, Hero’s client roster includes global brands such as Levi’s, Rag and Bone, Chloé, Harvey Nichols and Ted Baker and shares a number of retail partners with Klarna’s existing network such as Nike and JD Sports.
Sebastian Siemiatkowski, CEO of Klarna said: “Immersive shopping experiences are now expected by consumers when shopping online and forward-thinking brands want to provide consumers with a rich, interactive way to shop for their products. With Hero we share an ambition to elevate the shopping experience through the convergence of online and in-store shopping experiences, supporting retailers to inform and engage consumers in new ways.
“We see a huge opportunity to leverage Hero’s existing platform and expertise to allow in-store retail professionals to become global brand ambassadors. This will unlock growth for retailers by creating a new hybrid shopping experience that enables consumers to make informed purchasing decisions as part of an engaging and personalised shopping journey”.
Klarna’s chief marketing officer David Sandström added: “With Hero, Klarna can support retailers in empowering their in-store colleagues to serve a global audience, enhancing e-commerce with the benefits of physical retail.
“Longer term, we see opportunities for Klarna’s 90 million global consumers to share their shopping expertise as part of a social shopping ecosystem that defies physical and online boundaries, aligned to Klarna’s mission to ensure people can shop, bank and pay in ways that suit them and their lives today”.
Adam Levene, founder of Hero added: “By joining forces we are able to bring our technology to even more merchants and consumers across the world, making online shopping more social, interactive and ultimately more human”.
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