Science & Technology

/

Knowledge

Fintech company Sezzle's growth rockets higher as online shopping soars

Evan Ramstad, Star Tribune (Minneapolis) on

Published in Science & Technology News

Sezzle Inc., the Minneapolis fintech firm that's listed in Australia, said Tuesday its e-commerce platform soared in transaction volume and revenue during the spring months as homebound consumers shopped online more often.

Sezzle's shares jumped 25% on the news, closing at Aus$5.07, the highest level since the company went public on the Australia Stock Exchange last summer. That's more than three times their value in mid-March when stocks globally hit a low as the coronavirus created a global recession.

The company saw a slight dip in transaction activity as the outbreak spread in February and March. But business quickly rebounded during the April-through-June period. Repeat usage of its buy-now-pay-later platform climbed and Sezzle added new customers and retailers in record amounts.

"Our performance reaffirms our product's utility ... and the overall shift to e-commerce," Charlie Youakim, the company's chief executive, said in a statement.

Sezzle provides an alternative payment system on websites that allows shoppers to pay in installments rather than use a credit card. The system, or ones like it, appears at checkout alongside credit cards on an increasing number of websites.

Sezzle's transaction engine was used for $188 million in sales at retailers during the quarter, up nearly 60% from the first three months of the year and more than four times the volume of the same period a year ago.

That volume led to $10.6 million in merchant fees for Sezzle, which will be the bulk of its revenue for the quarter. That was up more than 50% from the first quarter of the year and well over four times the fee value from the year-ago quarter.

Sezzle will release a full financial statement for the quarter later this month.

 

Executives said they anticipate the Sezzle engine will be used for purchases valued at more than $250 million in the last three months of the year, or an annual run rate of $1 billion.

The company's biggest rival in buy-now-pay-later payment solutions, Melbourne-based Afterpay Touch Group Inc., also Tuesday reported that its underlying sales volume doubled to A$3.7 billion. That's a little more than 10 times the size of Sezzle's business.

Such installment pay systems are most popular in Australia but are being adopted more broadly on the websites of U.S. companies and by American consumers. In its report, Afterpay said its 5.6 million customers in the U.S. now represented its largest geography.

Sezzle reported 1.48 million customers, all in the U.S. and Canada. That was up 30% from the first three months of the year and three times the number of active customers during the same period a year ago.

(c)2020 Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

Visit the Star Tribune (Minneapolis) at www.startribune.com

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.