Australian buy now, pay later (BNPL) company Zip this week acquired South Africa-based BNPL player Payflex for an undisclosed amount.
It’s a piece of news that once again highlights the hype around BNPL services and the quest for global dominance among the leading players.
This year we have covered BNPL services from the likes of Afterpay, Klarna and Affirm. And tech and payments giants Apple, Square, PayPal and Visa have joined in the action, too, massively funneling cash to their respective BNPL initiatives (for one, Square acquired Afterpay).
Australia, the U.K. and the U.S. are key markets for BNPL services. The U.S. market is so big that the number of BNPL service users is expected to hit 45 million by year’s end, representing an 81% growth from last year. But despite its Western focus, BNPL is exploding in other markets driven by a collective effort from local and global players.