Fintech startup Klarna grew thanks to its e-commerce payment service, but now the startup is diversifying a bit. The Swedish company is launching Wavy, a free peer-to-peer payment app and service.
After Cookies imploded, Klarna approached the team behind the German app so that they could join another fintech company. It turns out that this team has been working on another peer-to-peer payment app. And the fact that Klarna is backing this project makes it interesting as it’s a highly competitive space.
There are quite a few peer-to-peer payment apps out there, such as Venmo and Square Cash in the U.S., Lydia in France and Ireland, Circle, etc. Other fintech products also let you send money instantly for free, such as Revolut and N26. Finally, big players are also adding peer-to-peer payment features as part of their existing products, such as Apple with Apple Pay in iOS 11, or Facebook with Messenger in the U.S.
Wavy is trying a different approach because people are tired of downloading new apps, signing up and saving their credit card information everywhere — with Wavy, only one side of the transaction has to sign up. It works in 31 European countries already.
When you create a transaction using the app, Wavy generates a link. You can then share this link in any messaging app. It works in Whatsapp, Messenger, iMessage — anything you want. Your recipient can then click on this link to open a web page.
Your recipient can then accept and redeem the payment with a standard IBAN — no need to sign up. If you are requesting money, your recipient can put their credit card or debit card number. Once again, you don’t need an account. If your friend doesn’t click on the link, the transaction expires after a while. You can add animated stickers to your payment.
Wavy hopes that at least some people will download the app — you need an account to initiate a transaction after all. If people on your network sign up, you can tap on their names directly in the app without having to share a link in a messaging app. That’s how Wavy can create a viral loop.
But Wavy’s hidden weapon is that anyone with a Klarna account can activate Wavy in their settings. It could quickly become a hit in some markets where Klarna is particularly popular, such as Sweden.