What Square’s acquisition of Afterpay means for startups – TechCrunch

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On Sunday Sq. introduced it was gobbling up Afterpay in a deal value $29 billion on the time of announcement. Alex adopted up yesterday with extra particulars on why the deal made sense for Sq. and Afterpay over right here, however we wished to ask some notable VCs what it means for the startup market.

For context, the Sq. deal follows a ton of cash and curiosity flowing into the BNPL market. Simply this 12 months, VCs have invested in corporations like Alma ($59.four million, January 2021), Scalapay ($48 million, January 2021), Wisetack ($19 million, February 2021), Zilch ($80 million, April 2021) and Dividio ($30 million, June 2021).

A lot of the buyers we reached out to have been typically bullish on the Sq. and Afterpay integration, however they have been much less enthusiastic about alternatives for different client BNPL companies to emerge.

Then there’s Klarna, which raised $639 million at a post-money valuation of $45.6 billion in June, after elevating $1 billion in March at a post-money valuation of $31 billion.

There’s additionally curiosity from some main public corporations. After a gradual begin, PayPal is aggressively pushing BNPL companies with retailers that provide it as a cost choice. And there are experiences that Apple is constructing its personal BNPL providing via Apple Pay.

We reached out to Commerce Ventures founder and GP Dan RosenHigher Tomorrow Ventures founding accomplice Jake Gibson, Fika Ventures accomplice TX Zhuo, and Matthew Harris of Bain Capital Ventures to see what they considered the deal, in addition to what it would imply for the chance for different BNPL corporations and startups.

The principle takeaways? “Purchase now, pay later” could also be efficient at driving retail conversion, however scale issues and long-term margins look slim for BNPL startups.

Now, let’s hear from the enterprise neighborhood.

The enterprise view

Why is the BNPL market so scorching?



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