Square plans to acquire Australian company Afterpay, which offers a “buy now, pay later” service that allows you to pay for interest-free installment purchases for $ 29 billion in shares, the two companies said on Sunday. This is the latest big move for Square, which also announced a Bitcoin business unit and bought a controlling stake in streaming service Tidal this year.
Buy now, pay later services such as those offered by Afterpay, Affirm and Klarna have become increasingly popular on the web. And Square may not be the only payments giant to jump in the ring, as Apple is reportedly working on a similar service that is internally called “Apple Pay Later”.
Afterpay already serves more than 16 million customers and nearly 100,000 merchants around the world, according to a press release. Square and Afterpay expect the transaction to close in the first quarter of 2022. Once the acquisition is complete, Square will appoint an Afterpay director to join Square’s board of directors.
“Square and Afterpay have a common goal. We have built our business to make the financial system more fair, accessible and inclusive, and Afterpay has built a brand of trust aligned with these principles, ”said Jack Dorsey, co-founder and CEO of Square, in a statement. “Together, we can better connect our Cash App and Seller ecosystems to deliver even more compelling products and services to merchants and consumers, empowering them. “