The past couple of years have been a challenge for many of us in many ways. Covid has changed the way we live our daily lives, how we travel, how we work and how we shop amongst other things. Online shopping has become a popular pastime for many and has profited immensely in the past few years. With that buy now, pay later solutions have experienced a boom and the trend continues to grow.
According to a study by Juniper Research, spending via various buy now, pay later services which are integrated in the checkout process will grow from $ 266 billion in 2021 to a whopping $ 995 billion in 2026. Which means that the market for BNPL will quadruple in just five years. This does not go unnoticed by many players in the industry who have developed innovative financing solutions enabling consumers to shop more flexibly. However, banks still have a long way to go when it comes to embracing the trend.
The end of a year is known to be a good moment to evaluate the past year and to plan the one ahead. For Credi2 2021 was a big year full of important milestones. Let’s look back.
With its start-up mentality, Credi2 is known for embracing change and actively shaping it, instead of fighting it or trying to avoid it. This is being mirrored in the company’s way of working, as well as in the products and its development. The year 2021 will be remembered in the history of Credi2 as the year of transformation. The company made its way from a rather small start-up to a fast growing scale-up. Credi2 started the year 2021 with roughly 40 employees and despite the pandemic managed to double this number by the end of the year, with a team of around 85 employees from 15 different countries. Flexibility also played a crucial role in 2021. Although the option of working from home has always existed at Credi2, a separate model was developed in 2021 that allows each team member to choose when and how much they want to work from home. This model showed that cooperation with good communication and regular exchange is possible even at a distance, which makes the fintech an attractive employer.
In May 2021, Credi2 conducted a larger survey asking their newest team members what information they were most interested in during the application process. Next to previous projects and the company profile, the team and the working atmosphere are the most important basis for decision-making. In order to give future colleagues an insight into the inner workings of Credi2, the company made a video.
A company that is in such a large growth phase must be able to maintain a certain balance. On the one hand, the quality of the products must be guaranteed and on the other hand, internal structures have to be adapted to the growth. For this reason, Credi2 founded its own interdisciplinary organisational development team last year, which coordinates the various projects within the company – a process the Viennese fintech has focused on in recent months.
Along with growing the team and brand awareness, Credi2 has also had some significant development with their products. cashpresso has become a product of Raiffeisen Bank International. The migration process took several months and went over smoothly. Raiffeisen Bank International is determined to further develop cashpresso to strengthen their position in the BNPL market.
FINANCE A BIKE, which is a flexible financing solution for bicycles, is a product Credi2 developed for the biggest mobility provider: Volkswagen Bank. After two years of its launch, FINANCE A BIKE has grown significantly. It is now available at over 1.000 bicycle dealerships across Germany and counting. FINANCE A BIKE is only the first step in developing financing solutions for other vehicles.
The biggest milestone for Credi2 in 2021 was the launch of the subscription model for Apple products in Germany and Austria. The subscription model is now available at a total of nine retailers. Credi2’s big 2021 focus and another success was the integration of the subscription model into the first mobile communications provider Congstar. In future, customers will be able to subscribe to their new iPhone directly when they take out their mobile phone contract. This means even more flexibility and cost control for Congstar’s 5 million customers.
Generally speaking, the popularity of subscription models especially for technology products is undeniable and growing. A trend that Credi2 addresses in more detail in its recently published BNPL study, which shows that especially younger people between the ages of 18 and 35 prefer renting products instead of owning them. This enables them to always stay up-to-date in terms of both sustainability and technology. Further findings of the representative survey Credi2 carried out in 2021 have been published in the study “Consumer Behaviour Rethought” as well as in the Whitepaper.
All in all, 2021 was a very successful year for Credi2 despite its many challenges, making it a turning point in the history of the fintech. With some significant milestones and steady growth under its belt, Credi2 has laid a strong foundation for the development of new products. It will be exciting to see what 2022 has in store.