Fintech startups are everywhere – how do you determine which ones are worth a second look? It’s a question that KPMG and fintech investment firm, H2 Ventures attempt to provide clarity on each year via their Fintech100 Report, which details what they believe are the leading 50 established fintech companies across the globe, and the most intriguing 50 ‘Emerging Stars’. These can be defined in a number of ways including exciting new fintechs with bold, disruptive and potentially game-changing ideas, companies that are using technology to their best advantage, and companies that are driving disruption within the financial services industry. One of the ’emerging stars’ this year is Australian-based Afterpay.
What is Afterpay?
Afterpay offer simple instalment plans for shoppers, allowing any online purchases to be paid for in four equal instalments, due every fortnight. Sign up online, and you can choose to shop from over 900 stores across Australia. First-time customers provide payment details as usual, returning customers simply log in to make their purchase. They will remind you when payments are due and will process your payments automatically.
After you check out, the goods will be shipped to you by the merchant. At any time, you can log in to your Afterpay account to see your payment schedule and make a payment before the due date. Otherwise they will automatically deduct the instalments from your debit or credit card every fortnight.
Q&A with Afterpay Managing Director and Co-Founder Nick Molnar
Q: Congratulations on being named as one of the top 100 ‘emerging star’ fintechs by H2 Ventures and KPMG as part of their 2016 Fintech100 list. What is your response to that achievement?
It’s fantastic and humbling to be recognised alongside such a prestigious list of global innovators. Afterpay is experiencing great growth momentum and we are excited to see this acknowledged by the H2 Ventures and KPMG expert teams.
Q: Can you give our readers your elevator pitch: why use Afterpay?
Afterpay is a next generation retail platform and a modern day lay-by system that provides customers with a better way to shop.
Afterpay provides customers with a convenient payment option which lets them buy and receive their purchase immediately but pay later in regular instalments. Afterpay is unashamedly customer centric and we do not charge customers any interest or upfront fees.
Retailers love Afterpay because it attracts customers and generates a much higher return on sales for them, addressing issues such as shopping cart abandonment online and similar instore purchase procrastination.
Q: New fintech startups are launched every week. Irrespective of idea or solution, are there any underlying qualities that a startup needs in order to hope for success?
We are inspired by what the end-customers want. We built Afterpay, with a deep understanding of what customers are looking for within the retail payments environment. We have addressed a gap for customers within the payments landscape.
Obviously there is an enormous amount of effort that goes into building a successful brand, and we have a brilliant team engaged in that task.
However, at its core, we believe Afterpay is a great example of what occurs when you get the recipe right for customers. Much of our customer growth is built around organic, word-of-mouth customer advocacy. That is a privileged position to be in.
We have seen enormous business growth in 2016. The next 12 months is about continuing to on-board our growing list of more than 900 Australian retailers and growing our customer base. We are making a few further product innovations and also exploring global opportunities.
Australian fintech stars
Afterpay was just one of an impressive nine Australian fintechs to make the Fintech100 report this year. For a small population, that’s a pretty good achievement. You can check out the full list of Australia Fintech100 inclusions here.
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