Swedish payments provider Klarna, known for its ‘buy now, pay later’ services, has launched a 3 million pound small business support package and accelerator programme to help British SMEs recover from the pandemic.
The Support Package will provide 100 retail SMEs with access to support across different elements of their business, from office space and customer acquisition to advertising. In addition, they will receive WeWork All Access for 3 months, complimentary use of Klarna’s Pay later products for one year and 15,000 pounds of Klarna media services to boost customer acquisition.
Klarna notes that the entire package equates to over 30,000 pounds of support for each business.
Support will be split across four categories: the retail innovator, for the small businesses who have been breaking barriers and bringing innovation to the retail industry; the omnichannel trailblazer, for those leading the way on omnichannel retail, and creating exceptional cross-channel experiences for their customers; the sustainability champion, celebrating retailers who champion sustainable retail as part of their business; and the pandemic impact, for SME’s who have been heavily impacted by the pandemic - from physical store closures to impact on demand.
Small businesses with a turnover of less than 5 million pounds turnover, registered in the United Kingdom, have until September 8 to apply for a slice of the support fund.
Klarna announces 3 million pounds small business support package
The SME recipients of the support package will be decided by a panel of judges including Matt Vickers MP for Stockton South and co-chair of the APPG on Future of Retail, Alex Marsh head of UK for Klarna and Mathieu Proust, general manager, UK, Ireland and emerging markets at WeWork.
Alex Marsh, head of UK at Klarna, said in a statement: “SMEs are at the core of our economy and it’s vital that they’re given all the tools they need to survive. At Klarna, we are determined to help small retailers navigate their way back to pre-pandemic levels and we hope that this fund, together with our Accelerator Programme, will inspire and boost confidence across the SME sector.”
The support package comes as new research, commissioned by Klarna, reveals that a quarter (24 percent) of SMEs aren’t confident that their business will survive the next two years with 46 percent of owners stating their main priority is to simply survive the next six months, while 38 percent worry that their business won’t survive the pandemic and a further 39 percent stating that they feel they are still yet to recover.
In addition to the 3 million pound support fund, Klarna is also launching a ten-part Accelerator Programme hosting a series of free training masterclasses with industry experts from various partners including Shopify, WeWork, Global-e, Dotdigital and more to provide SMEs with actionable insights to boost their business.