Hypergrowth Buy Now, Pay Later platform Zilch has launched in the US.
The London company, which features no fees or late charges along with 2% instant cashback rewards, has accrued more than two million customers since launching in the UK 18 months ago.
Zilch has now launched in the US with over 150,000 pre-registered customers and is accepted everywhere Mastercard can be used – 38.7 million retailers globally.
Utilising a blend of open banking technology combined with soft credit checks and its own behavioural data each time a customer spends, Zilch can develop a real-time view of a consumer’s financial health. That enables it to provide accurate, individualised spending recommendations.
Zilch is also partnering with Experian to pioneer reciprocal reporting of payment plans to the credit reporting agency’s data set. This, it says, will lead to greater transparency and accuracy, while rewarding customers for their responsible behaviour, allowing them to build credit scores.
Zilch has raised $400 million in debt and equity from Goldman Sachs and others, giving it a valuation of over $2 billion at its last Series C funding round.
“In 2020, US consumers paid $120 billion in fees and late charges to credit cards, which we believe is unacceptable and fundamentally misaligned with the interests of consumers,” said Philip Belamant, CEO and co-founder of Zilch.
“They are being set up to fail and need more flexibility, especially during a cost of living crisis and a time of surging inflation, to pay for goods and services how and when they want – with a system that avoids late payments and unnecessary, onerous fees.
“Our experience in the UK, and the survey we conducted here in the US, make it clear that US consumers want much more from BNPL providers, what we call BNPL 2.0 – which removes what consumers dislike: a lack of ubiquity, fees and/or late charges.”
Zilch customers can pay over six weeks, in four instalments, or in one lump sum. Those who pay in full benefit from deals and cash back, which Zilch says gives them the freedom and perks of credit services without any of the cost.
To support the US expansion and operations, Zilch has opened a Miami headquarters which is led by Zilch’s US CEO Albert Periu. It expects to hire over 100 employees in the US within the next year.
“We’re thrilled to be fully operational from Zilch’s US headquarters in Miami, as the city’s entrepreneurial spirit and diversity of talent serves as an excellent home for the company’s growth in the US,“ said Periu.
Currently, Zilch’s Miami office employs teams across various corporate departments including operations, engineering, marketing, design and HR.