New regulation? Bring it on, says Klarna, in new ad blitz

Klarna - Fintechs - ShoreditchKlarna UK, one of the biggest players in the “buy now, pay later” market, has launched a new marketing campaign to coincide with a plans for a clampdown on the sector, championing consumers who are managing their spending responsibly, supporting greater regulation and challenging common stereotypes.

The company, whose in-house marketing team just missed out on winning the grand prix at the recent DMA Awards, is running a series of outdoor executions, highlighting popular fallacies and social stereotypes, including, “Pink is for girls” and “Millennials are useless with money”.

The activity goes on to clarify that colour has no gender and that millennials actually save 36% more money than older generations.

The Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) – which sits within the Advertising Standards Authority – has already warned firms to toe the line and earlier this week, the Government revealed plans to put firms in the sector under the supervision of the Financial Conduct Authority and force them to conduct affordability checks before lending to customers. Ministers insisted they would legislate as soon as possible, following consultation.

The move follows a report by the FCA which estimated the market has nearly doubled in size in the past year alone and is now worth £2.7bn a year.

Klarna launched in the UK in 2014 but has doubled its UK customer base to 7 million since the first coronavirus lockdown. Its two main rivals both launched in the UK in 2019. New Zealand-based LayBuy has refused to divulge customer numbers but has deals with more than 800 retailers, including JD Sports, Footasylum, WH Smith, AX Paris; Australian ClearPay has over 500,000 customers and its partners include M&S, Urban Outfitters and Pretty Little Thing.

However, Klarna’s outdoor confirms the company’s support for further regulation to better protect consumers, with an execution that states: “Let’s make regulation fit for today. Consumers want to bank, pay and shop in innovative and new ways. And we want what’s best for them.”

Head of UK marketing AJ Coyne said: “Consumer preferences and shopping habits are constantly evolving, yet stereotypes and common, incorrect assumptions appear to be stuck in the dark ages. Our latest campaign sets out to challenge these beliefs and to champion our customers – from Millennials to GenXers.

“We recognise that our customers don’t need nor want to be labelled, they need responsible solutions which protect them when shopping. At Klarna we are proud to provide that support and will continue to innovate and develop to keep up with our dynamic and diverse customers.”

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