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US fintech Croissant exits stealth with $24m raise to shake up the e-commerce experience

Integrating directly into merchants’ shopping experiences, Croissant offers customers guaranteed buybacks to amplify their purchasing power.

Croissant John Howard

John Howard/Croissant.

Coming out of stealth after just over a year, B2B fintech platform Croissant is launching with $24m of funding in its pocket to “empower intentional commerce”.

Operating in what it describes as a currently fractured retail environment, Croissant integrates into merchants’ existing e-commerce sites to offer guaranteed buyback at the checkout.

Using AI, the fintech decides how much a product will be worth when it’s resold second-hand and then guarantees that price at the point of purchase.

“Over the past decade, we’ve seen immense changes happen at the e-commerce point of sale,” Croissant co-founder and CEO John Howard said. 

“But rapidly evolving consumer behaviour and expectations mean it’s no longer enough for merchants to have a seamless credit card or mobile wallet experience; they need to activate consumer psychology around the purchase decision in empowering, impactful, and effortless ways to truly stand out. 

“Croissant allows merchants to increase sales, consumers to buy more and better, and both to enjoy the benefits of resale without doing any reselling whatsoever.”

In summary, it’s a  “richer, more vibrant commerce experience for everybody”, according to Howard.

Formerly a director at global investment firm KKR, Howard co-founded Croissant alongside chief technology officer John Klose, who was previously at Amazon and PayPal.

The seed funding came from a number of investors, including the founders of Howard’s former company KKR, George Roberts and Henry Kravis, as well as fintech and financial services investment platform Portage.

“Only a small percentage of resellable fashion is transacted globally each year, but it's still a $130 billion market that is rapidly growing,” Portage partner Stephanie Choo said.

“To date, retailers are seeing little to no benefit from this ongoing boom. Croissant enables them to harness the interest in and growth of resale to drive new full-price sales with minimal integration and no need to transact within the secondhand ecosystem themselves.”

According to Croissant, it was founded in part as a response to consumer debt-focused offerings.

The fintech, by contrast, aims to financially empower consumers by switching the mindset from “credit-fueled consumption” to asset ownership.

If a user later decides to sell what they purchased, Croissant manages the resale process without involving either the merchant or the customer.

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