Swedish payments company Klarna announced that it has received a full banking licence from the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority, Finansinspektionen.

Klarna stated that receiving banking licence enables it to broaden its product portfolio for its customers and merchants.

It aims to transform parts of retail banking with its technological platform and a focus on customer experience, innovation and simplicity. 

Klarna CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski said: “This is another exciting milestone on the Klarna journey to become the world’s favourite way to buy but also for the European banking sector.

"We are now one of Europe’s largest banks with 60 million customers, 70,000 merchants and working seamlessly across borders.”

Founded in Sweden in 2005, Klarna is backed by investors such as Sequoia Capital, Bestseller, Atomico and General Atlantic. It is active in 18 markets with over 1500 employees. 

Recently, an equity stake in Klarna was acquired by Brightfolk, a company owned by Anders Holch Povlsen. The percentage of stake and the amount that will be paid by Brightfolk were not mentioned by Klarna.

Siemiatkowski added: “As the entire banking value chain is being challenged, the payments sector has seen the most profound transformation. Klarna has played a role in disrupting payments services for the better and now as a consumer-oriented, product driven and technology intensive bank, we have the tools to drive change in retail banking.

“We will do this by providing solutions that ensure a smooth customer experience, help people streamline their financial lives and continue to support businesses by solving the complexity in handling payments. The opportunities are tremendous, it is a thrilling prospect.”

This February, Klarna announced the acquisition of BiillPay, a German online payment company to strengthen its position as one of the leading payment providers in Europe.

Image: Klarna CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski. Photo: Courtesy of Klarna Bank AB.