Klarna sways towards US over UK for stock market listing
The head of buy now, pay later (BNPL) firm Klarna has suggested the company will choose the US over London as the location for its upcoming stock market listing.
Speaking to The Sunday Times, Sebastian Siemiatkowski says: “It’s more likely that Klarna will list in the US.”
However, the Klarna boss reiterated that a UK-based listing is not completely off the table.
He added: “The majority of my investors would say that [the US] is where you usually list… but are we going to consider London? And are there elements of how you guys are thinking about changing the rules that could make it more attractive? Absolutely.”
This is despite the fact the UK looks set to clamp down on the BNPL sector following a recent report by financial watchdog the FCA highlighting the need for regulation around unsecured lending.
Klarna’s current valuation is thought to be around $50bn (£35bn). As such, the listing would be a huge boon for the chosen exchange.
A US listing would be a blow to UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak, who recently set out proposals in an attempt to enhance the UK’s competitive advantage in fintech, from regulatory support and reforms to help firms grow.
Building on opportunities generated since the UK’s departure from the EU, Sunak confirmed the UK will be taking forward many of the recommendations made in the recent Fintech Review, led by Ron Kalifa, and the Listing Review, led by Lord Hill.
Speaking at Fintech Week in April, Sunak said: “Our vision is for a more open, greener and more technologically advanced financial services sector. The UK is already known for being at the forefront of innovation, but we need to go further.
“The steps I’ve outlined today, to boost growing fintechs, push the boundaries of digital finance and make our financial markets more efficient, will propel us forward. And if we can capture the extraordinary potential of technology, we’ll cement the UK’s position as the world’s pre-eminent financial centre.”