Klarna founder on the future of beauty payments, advice for start-ups – and Snoop Dogg

Sebastian Siemiatkowski – co-founder of the 'buy now, pay later' fintech firm – has rapidly grown the company's beauty retail portfolio from Cult Beauty to Beauty Bay

Why did you launch Klarna?

When studying, myself and Niklas Adalberth decided to take a sabbatical year and travel around the world without flying. During our travels I worked in sales, where I was made aware of e-commerce and the problems to sell in a simple and safe way for consumers, and this actually became one of the main drivers behind Klarna.

Neither Victor, Niklas or I had any experience in finance when we co-founded the company. We were 20-something-year-olds, probably pretty naive, but I truly believe it was an advantage that we didn't think the same way traditional banks and finance executives did, and still do.

The initial business idea, offering consumers to pay after receiving the goods, actually has some of its roots in the mail order catalogue. We introduced this offering to the market at a time when consumers were hesitant to shop online as it was widely regarded as unsafe, complicated and frustrating. Separating the payment from the purchase solved that and increased trust for the consumer, as you wouldn’t pay for the goods until you knew you wanted to keep them.

Even though technology has certainly . . .

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