Afterpay Posts Record Earnings, Nears 15 Million Users

The buy now, pay later company hit $5.7 billion in sales in its fiscal third quarter.

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Need to Know

  • The buy now, pay later company reported a year-over-year underlying sales spike of 123%.
  • March 2021 delivered the second-highest monthly underlying sales on record for Afterpay, with the US recording more than $1 billion in monthly underlying sales.
  • Active customers increased by 75% year over year, to hit 14.6 million, with active merchants growing by 77%, hitting more than 85,000.

Analysis

Buy now, pay later company Afterpay reported record sales in Q3 of its 2021 fiscal year, with an underlying sales increase of 123% when compared to the same time period last year, hitting $5.7 billion.

Afterpay also reported a 104% underlying sales increase over the previous quarter. In the US, those sales were up 211%, with the UK rising 277%. North America is the largest sales contributor for Afterpay, with the US becoming the first region to reach more than $1 billion in sales for Afterpay. Meanwhile, March 2021 delivered the second-highest monthly underlying sales ever recorded for Afterpay.

Customer growth and acquisition were also strong for Afterpay, with active customers increasing 75% compared to the same time last year, hitting 14.6 million; North America and the UK reached 9.3 million and 1.8 million active customers respectively. Active merchants grew by 77%, to reach more than 85,000.

Notable new retailers added by Afterpay to its platform in the US over the quarter included Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, Free People, BHLDN, Terrain, and Bed Bath & Beyond; in Canada, Afterpay added Shiseido, Pandora, and lululemon.

Afterpay has seen substantial growth over the last year, not least of all because the COVID-19 pandemic pushed more consumers towards flexible financing options due to heightened financial insecurity; Bank of America projects the buy now, pay later will grow 10 to 15 times the size of what it is after its surge in popularity in 2020.

Afterpay’s growth strategy extends beyond simple financing: the company expanded into physical stores in October, with 700,000 users downloading the digital Afterpay card in one month; 90% of shoppers using Afterpay are repeat customers.

The platform’s Shop Directory, meanwhile, is a powerful e-comm tool in an of itself: it allows customers to search different shops that accept Afterpay, and is powered by personalized recommendations and tailored discounts.

“We place a lot of emphasis on meeting our customers where they are, both online and off,” Alex Fisher, Afterpay’s VP of retail, told Digital earlier this year. “Just as we have invested in developing our digital channels to support online customers throughout their shopping journey, we are now exploring offline channels that do the same for our in-store shoppers.”

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