BNPL 2.0 Comes to America – Zilch Reinventing Installment- Payments Plans, With No Interest or Late Charges and Cashback Rewards
Offers First-Of-Its-Kind Reciprocal Credit Reporting Relationship with Experian,Providing Greater Transparency Around Customer Affordability
Launches With Over 150,000 Pre-Registered Customers
MIAMI, FLORIDA, May 17, 2022– Zilch, a next-generation payments and Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) platform, with a BNPL 2.0 business model that works directly with consumers and features no fees or late charges along with 2% instant cashback rewards, has launched in the US with over 150,000 pre-registered customers. Zilch is accepted everywhere Mastercard can be used.
Zilch’s arrival in the US comes after growing to over two million customers in the 18 months since it launched in the UK, making it one of the world’s fastest growing fintechs and largest BNPL providers in that country. During that time, Zilch 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.
Utilizing a blend of Open Banking technology combined with soft credit checks and its own proprietary behavioral data each time a customer spends allows Zilch to develop a real-time view of a consumer’s financial health. That enables Zilch to create a 360-degree picture of a customer’s affordability profile, and provide accurate, individualized spending recommendations.
Concurrent with its launch, Zilch, is partnering with Experian to pioneer reciprocal reporting of payment plans to the credit reporting agency’s (CRA’s) data set. This is designed to help ensure consumers’ financial health by providing greater transparency and accuracy, while rewarding customers for their responsible behavior allowing them to build credit scores.
“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,” stated Philip Belamant, CEO & 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.”
BNPL payment and financing programs have been gaining in popularity around the world, as they facilitate the ability of consumers to make purchases as needed, and to pay for them at a future date, often interest-free.
“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 (lack of ubiquity/fees and/or late charges). Zilch also gives what consumers say they value – cash back, which can be used to discount larger purchases,” Belamant added.
Zilch customers can pay over six weeks, in four installments, or in one lump sum. Notably, customers who pay in full, benefit from deals and cash back, allowing consumers the freedom and perks of credit services, without any of the cost. Through its partnership with Mastercard, Zilch can be used with 38.7 million retailers globally.
Industry-Leading Strategic Partners
One of the keys to Zilch’s growth has been its successful partnerships with industry-leading firms across the spectrum of fintech. These partnerships form the behind-the-scenes foundation that allows Zilch to provide consumers with a simple, seamless way to pay for goods and services in a way that best suits them.
“Zilch is emblematic of the innovative, disruptive, fast-growing fintech company we seek to build long-term relationships with,” stated Gilles Gade, Founder, President and CEO of Cross River. “Cross River’s technology unlocks opportunities for partners across the entirety of the fintech ecosystem, and a partner like Zilch is helping to foster financial inclusion and access to responsible credit.”
“Zilch has packaged the consumer experience of BNPL that has been so popular inside one easy-to-use virtual card, with spending controls tailored to each individual user,” said Vidya Peters, Chief Operating Officer at Marqeta. “We felt like their product was a close DNA-fit with Marqeta and the payments innovations our modern card issuing platform helps enable. We look forward to supporting them as they launch their product in the American market.”
Guillaume Pousaz, Founder and CEO at Checkout.com, said: “With a rapid rise to success in the BNPL space, Zilch has taken a bold and innovative approach to helping consumers afford the goods and services they need. As its exclusive cloud-based payments processor in the US, Checkout.com is proud to support Zilch’s regional expansion with our single API–and we’re looking forward to powering its global growth in the months and years ahead.”
US Headquarters Based in Miami
To support the U.S. expansion and operations, Zilch has opened a Miami headquarters which is led by Zilch’s US CEO Albert Periu. Mr. Periu and Zilch believe the US market for the company’s services could reach as many as 125 million people, and plan to scale the company accordingly. Zilch 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 Albert Periu, Chief Executive Officer of Zilch US.
Currently, Zilch’s Miami office employs teams across various corporate departments including Operations, Engineering, Marketing, Design and HR.
Born to create the world’s most empowering way to pay, Zilch is revolutionizing the consumer credit, ‘buy now, pay later’ (BNPL) and payments industry with innovative products for customers to manage their cash flow responsibly. Zilch partners directly with consumers rather than merchants, allowing customers to pay using debit or credit anywhere Mastercard is accepted. Zilch offers its customers the best ways to pay – credit or debit – save money and get cash back – plan repayments with reminders and/or even deferred (snooze) installments at no cost.
Zilch makes use of a unique blend of best in market CRA data, Open Banking and its own proprietary behavioral data technologies to make active consumer lending decisions each time a customer spends to drive responsibility. This creates a real-time 360-degree view and assessment of a customer’s affordability.
Since launching in September 2020, the company has amassed over two million customers in the UK and is adding over 250,000 new users per month. Additionally, Zilch is Europe’s fastest-ever company to go from Series A to double unicorn status, achieving that milestone in just 14 months. In 2021, Philip Belamant, Zilch’s CEO & Co-Founder won the UK’s Great British Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Zilch also took home Scale Up Company of 2021 at the same annual UK Awards.