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Standard Chartered expands into BNPL, US$500M to finance Atome in new partnership

Collage of Atome and StanChart

Standard Chartered announced today (October 13) its plans to provide financing of US$500 million as part of its commitment to support Atome Financial’s future growth.

This is part of a 10-year multi-product strategic partnership, combining their strengths in finance and technology to deliver a wide range of financial services to consumers and merchants across key markets in Asia.

This investment marks one of Standard Chartered’s largest strategic investments in fintech to date, supporting its ambition to expand its reach and scale within the mass market segment via a digital-first approach, underpinned by digital acquisition and new partnership models.       

The partnership will initially include buy now pay later services, targeting to roll out in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam in the next few months, and later expand to include digital lending products.

atome
Image Credit: Atome

For Standard Chartered, this is a winning collaboration. With the bank’s deep knowledge of Asia’s Markets coupled with Atome Financial’s digital consumer finance, it will allow them to reach more customers and drive financial participation of those underserved and underbanked.

This partnership with Atome Financial gives us the opportunity to be part of the rapidly growing digital consumer finance ecosystem and provides convenient and relevant digital financial products to complement and enrich clients’ digital lives.

Riding on our successful digital ventures and partnerships, we continue to be fearlessly innovative in disrupting ourselves to better serve our clients. Our deep knowledge of Asia’s markets coupled with Atome Financial’s experience in digital consumer finance will allow us to reach even more customers and drive greater financial participation of those underserved and underbanked.

– Judy Hsu, CEO, Consumer, Private and Business Banking of Standard Chartered Bank

Atome to reach more financial markets

With this new investment and Atome’s recent closing of a US$400 million Series D financing round from an investor consortium led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2 and Warburg Pincus, this puts the company at a valuation of US$2 billion.

Standard Chartered’s investment will enable Atome Financial to grow and connect a wider ecosystem of merchants to a larger customer base, improving product access and financial inclusion for consumers across the region.

At the same time, Atome Financial’s customers will gain access to more innovative financial services, easily accessed via their mobile devices. 

Atome CEO Jefferson Chen
Jefferson Chen, co-founder, Group chairman and CEO of Advance Intelligence Group and CEO of Atome Financial / Image Credit: Advance Intelligence Group

“By providing consumers with easier, simpler, and more convenient access to a full suite of digital-first financial services, we can accelerate broader financial inclusion across both developed and emerging markets in Asia,” said Jefferson Chen, co-founder, Group chairman and CEO of Advance Intelligence Group, and CEO of Atome Financial.

“At the same time, this partnership with Standard Chartered will allow us to expand our merchant network and help retailers increase their customer base and basket sizes, contributing to economic growth across the region.”

This partnership between the two powerhouses is expected to reach 16 million customers by 2025 and gain access to multiple financial ecosystems in order to capture a share of the digital lending market, valued at US$92 billion by 2025 in South East Asia alone.

Featured Image Credit: Digital News Asia via Reuters

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