Alternative payments specialist Sezzle has raised $5.6 million in funding in advance of its debut on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) later this year. The financing was led by Continental Investors of Chicago, and featured participation from a total of 10 investors. Sezzle plans to raise $6 million in the current round, which was described as a “pre-IPO” round by the Australian Financial Review.
Sezzle hopes to raise between $20 million and $30 million via initial public offering on the ASX. The company admits that it has no plans to begin operations in Australia, and that the listing on the ASX was to take advantage of the investment interest that Afterpay, a Sezzle rival based in Melbourne, has enjoyed since its own arrival on the ASX. Sezzle CEO Charlie Youakim noted that investors in Australia have been quicker than investors in the U.S. to embrace what he called “the potential of the payment method.”
Sezzle empowers consumers by enabling them to make purchases and pay for them in four, interest-free installments, payable every two weeks. The company’s merchant partners have recorded higher average order value and higher conversion rates since adding Sezzle to their checkout systems. More than 3,500 stores currently offer Sezzle as an option.
Sezzle’s funding comes just a few months after the company announced that its Shop Now Pay Later option would be available on the 3dcart ecommerce platform. Founded in 1997, the Florida-based, Inc. 5,000 company has more than 22,000 merchants using its technology to build and manage online stores and shopping carts, and engage in content marketing.
“By providing our merchants with an easy way to allow customers to finance their purchases, we open up possibilities for both retailers and customers,” 3dcart founder and CEO Gonzalo Gil said.
Sezzle demonstrated its technology at FinovateFall 2018. Founded in 2016 and headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the company was named to American Inno’s Top Minnesota Startup Fundings of 2018 in December, the same month the company announced the hiring of new Chief Risk Officer Jamie Kirkpatrick.
Also late last year, Sezzle picked up a $100 million line of credit from Connecticut-based investment firm, Bastion. The financing helped Sezzle promote its pay-in-2019 initiative with online retailer Tobi during last year’s holiday season. Sezzle also partnered with Priority Payment Systems last fall, which began offering Sezzle’s alternative payment option to the 174,000+ merchants on its network.
Alternative ecommerce payment system Sezzleannounced last week it pulled in a $100 million line of credit. The new round multiplies the Minnesota-based company’s existing funding by almost 10x, bringing its total raised to just shy of $111 million.
The funding, which comes from Connecticut-based investment firm Bastion, is being used to fuel Sezzle’s new pay-in-2019 initiative with online retailer Tobi. The promotion, which will be available throughout the holidays, gives Tobi.com shoppers interest-free purchase financing. After paying 25% of the purchase price at checkout, shoppers can wait to pay the remaining three-quarters of the purchase, interest-free, until after January 2, 2019, at which point they pay in three equal installments.
Tobi’s target market is focused on young females– a demographic which typically either has no credit or thin credit files. “Because these young consumers are credit-starved, they tend to abandon their online shopping cart instead of clicking through to purchase,” Sezzle CEO Charlie Youakim said. “With our option, those shoppers are more likely to convert to a sale. We even see them spending more and shopping more frequently.”
The pay-in-2019 payment model is a departure from Sezzle’s existing buy now, pay later offering, which typically allows users to spread the repayment of the purchase price across 6 weeks of financing. If the trial with Tobi yields increased sales results, Sezzle plans to move forward with the new financing model with other retailers, as well.
Founded in 2016, Sezzle demoed its alternative payment platform at FinovateFall earlier this year. Last month, the company teamed up with Priority Payment Systems which will offer Sezzle as an option to its merchant clients.
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