The idea of paying later is paying off now for Nick Molnar.
As chief executive officer and cofounder of Afterpay, Molnar has already been a source of massive change on the Australian retail scene.
The three-year-old Melbourne-based company — which helps shoppers pay in four interest-free installments — already processes a quarter of all e-commerce orders in beauty and fashion in Australia.
Now, the company is expanding in the U.S., where it launched in May, and is working with more than 1,000 retailers online (each web site is counted as one retailer). The service works with ThirdLove, Urban Outfitters Inc., Superga, KKW Beauty, Revolve and more.
Afterpay has said that brands using its installment system have seen conversion rates and incremental sales rise by 20 to 30 percent.
To keep growth up, Molnar is focusing on the Millennial consumer — a demographic he said does not want to go into debt and is keen to link their Afterpay account to their debit cards, not their credit cards.
The ceo noted that Millennials will control half of all disposable income in seven years and that the retail market can engage this cohort through payments.
“They’re not young anymore,” Molnar said. “They’re the ones that are driving retail. We do everything Millennial first and then, if you’re solving for a Millennial…you solve for mass. Retailers now are really trying to engage with Millennials in deep and meaningful ways.”
He said 70 percent of Afterpay’s transactions come through mobile devices as Millennials spend on the go.
“We surround ourselves with people who understand the Millennials,” Molnar said. “It helps that I’m a Millennial, that kind of drives the core value through the whole organization.”
In Australia, Afterpay acts as a key e-commerce hub, where shoppers who use the service go to its site to find retailers.
The company is working replicate that dynamic in the U.S. Molnar said Afterpay directed 500,000 leads to the sites of its retail partners last month.