Klarna introduces bank accounts in Germany as it moves closer to building a financial ‘super app’

By Aisling Finn on Wednesday 10 February 2021

Digital Banking

Klarna’s bank accounts will be available to a select group of ‘loyal customers’ before being rolled out more widely across Germany.

Klarna introduces bank accounts in Germany as it moves closer to building a financial ‘super app’
Image source: Sebastian Siemiatkowski/Klarna

Swedish fintech Klarna has taken its first steps towards creating its own ‘super app’, introducing bank accounts for a limited number of German users.

Klarna will provide the select group of users with a Visa debit card and a bank account with a German IBAN, enabling them to set up direct debits and deposits. 

In the Klarna app, customers will be able to track their spending and upcoming payments, with budgeting tools set to be rolled out in the coming months. 

After initially only being available for a small group of customers, Klarna is hoping to allow more customers to open bank accounts over the next few months. 

Sebastian Siemiatkowski, CEO and founder of Klarna said: “There is still a lot of room for improvement in the way we currently manage our finances and save money. Users expect seamless, intuitive and transparent services to meet their daily needs. However, many traditional banks are not yet meeting this.”

“With Klarna Banking we bundle shopping and banking in one app and offer consumers the opportunity to conduct their banking transactions just as easy to do as shopping with Klarna.

The latest addition to Klarna’s product offering can be added to both Google Pay and Apple Pay and customers can withdraw cash fee-free twice a month.

The move comes just over six months after the fintech launched its first savings accounts in Germany, in partnership with fellow fintech Raisin, taking its first tentative steps into the world of digital banking. 

Raisin’s German customers could access Klarna’s attractive savings rates through Raisin WeltSparen, with Klarna’s 1-year rate seven times higher than the average savings account in Germany at the time of its launch. 

Klarna already holds a full Swedish banking licence, that it was granted back in 2017, so has been gearing up for this new deposit-taking product for some time now. 

It has also been rumoured that the fintech is in the process of closing another massive $500m funding round, seeing its valuation skyrocket to anywhere between $25-30bn. 

At the new valuation, Klarna will become the second European fintech to have tripled its valuation after payment processor Checkout.com did so twice, first in June 2020 and more recently in January of this year. 

The report comes at a crucial time for the buy-now-pay-later sector with soaring demand for its services but Klarna and other BNPL fintechs have been under the microscope as of late as more people join the call for tighter regulation in the sector.

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