BNPL startup Klarna’s valuation falls to US$15b: WSJ

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SWEDISH payments firm Klarna Bank is looking to raise less capital than earlier planned and at a much lower valuation of US$15 billion, the Wall Street Journal reported citing people familiar with the matter.

The Stockholm-based company is currently in talks with investors about fresh funds totalling at least US$500 million, which is about half its earlier ambition to raise up to US$1 billion, according to the newspaper. 

The deal would value the buy-now-pay-later provider at about US$15 billion, the people said, considerably lower than both the US$46 billion valuation quoted in a financing round 12 months ago and the US$30 billion mark discussed in May.

Klarna, billed as Europe's most valuable startup in 2021, has seen its fortunes dramatically change amid a tougher climate for privately-held tech companies, sparked by soaring inflation and tighter monetary policy. Last month, the Swedish company announced it was laying off about 10 per cent of its employees in an effort to cut costs. 

A Klarna spokesperson told Bloomberg News that the company would not comment on fundraising or valuation speculation. BLOOMBERG

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