Company Wars: Klarna vs Stripe

Published by Millie Goadby on

In a market where competitive rivals are constantly playing a game of one-upmanship, we’ve decided to help break it down for you so you can really see who’s doing what, where, when and how – to help you stay ahead of the recruitment curve and make those placements better, faster, and with a happier client at the end of it all too!


Our last article saw Robinhood and Stash battle it out, this week in company wars, we’re pitting online payments gateways giants, Klarna and Stripe, against each other. Keep reading to see how they measure up.


Founded in 2005 and 2009 respectively, the Stockholm and San Francisco-headquartered firms are taking different approaches in their strategy, growth, and development. Having taken a closer look at these payment processing competitors, let’s pull out the vital stats:


Who are they?

Founded in Stockholm in 2005, Klarna has become one of Europe’s largest digital banks, known for their ‘Buy Now, Pay Later’ approach, providing payment solutions to over 60m consumers. Their website ranks up there with Revolut’s in terms of fun content. They describe themselves as ‘smoooth’, repeatedly, but certainly not in the criminal sense. In fact, their intentions are so pure that their name means ‘clear’ in Swedish, reflecting their ‘crystal clear’ approach to letting customers know what they’re doing with their money. Basically, they let you know that they’re providing credit, and if you don’t pay-up, you’ll be getting a visit from the repo-men. ‘Klarna by name, Klarna by nature’.

In 2009, Stripe was born from the brains of two Irish brothers; they’re based in San Francisco now, though. Their website isn’t as fun as Klarna’s, which is fine, I guess. Their mission? To increase the GDP of the internet by building an effective online payment infrastructure for businesses. It’s all very… worthy. But a firm with a conscience they certainly seem to be. Looking to mitigate their impact on growing greenhouse gas emissions, Stripe have measured their greenhouse gas footprint and invested in enough carbon offsets to become a carbon-neutral company. Now who needs fun when you can have a clear conscience?



Klarna’s products are currently available in ten countries, with offices in:

  •  Amsterdam, Berlin, Brussels, Columbus, Helsinki, Linden, London, Munich, New York, Oslo, Stockholm, and Vienna

Stripe’s services are supported in 34 countries with 14 global offices. They’re currently advertising for jobs in these 18 locations:

  • Amsterdam, Bangalore, Berlin, Chicago, China, Dublin, Indonesia, London, Melbourne, Mexico City, New York City, Paris, San Francisco, São Paulo, Seattle, Singapore, Stockholm, and Tokyo
Current company headcount


  • Crunchbase: 1001-5000
  • Craft: 2384
  • LinkedIn: 2403


  • Crunchbase: 1001-5000
  • Craft: 2133
  • LinkedIn: 2137

How many vacancies

Advertising 129 job vacancies across 12 different offices – largely in Europe, but with a growing US presence too.

Currently looking to fill a staggering 433 roles. Hiring is underway across the board, and globe!

Customer and employee satisfaction

  • Which?: Zilch. If you search for Stripe on Which? you just get adverts for lawnmowers. I honestly don’t know if that’s good or not.
  • TrustPilot: 4.6/10. Not ideal.
  • Glassdoor: 4.2/5

Current valuation

  • Crunchbase: 16 funding rounds totalling $1.2bn.
  • Crafttotal valuation $5.5bn
  • Crunchbase: 10 funding rounds totalling $785m.
  • Craft: total valuation of $22.5bn. Not letting the haters get them down, then.

Number of leads on TT

Klarna: A respectable, if not exciting, six.

Stripe: Stepping out well ahead in the news stakes, it’s 12 leads for Stripe.

Tell your candidate…

… that Klarna are on a mission to liberate humanity from all the time we waste on managing money, giving us more time to do what we love. What if the thing you love is managing money? Then Klarna is not for you. But if you are ‘unreasonable enough to think you can change the world,’ well then, ‘welcome home, Explorer.’ Tell your candidate that Klarna seems to be really into space metaphors, that their careers page has stars in the background, and that it might be a shout to turn-up to the interview in a space suit. If that trick pays off, I expect dividends.

… that these behind the scenes champions get their kicks from quietly powering the payments infrastructure of all your favourite billion dollar companies. In their words, ‘freeing up others to work in the spotlight’. So selfless, and shouldn’t we all try and be more selfless? Tell your candidate that Stripe will trust them with enormous responsibility if they’ve got the skills to pay the bills. Does your candidate feel like nothing they do everyday really makes an impact? Do they feel like their life is slipping away? Join Stripe!

Maybe don’t tell your candidate…

…that Klarna have faced criticism for allegedly seducing millennials into spending money they don’t have and accruing debt. That while they might claim to be crystal clear about what they’re doing, some people think clarity doesn’t matter when what you’re doing is teaching a new generation dangerous spending habits. Knock, knock. Who’s there? The repo men. The repo men who? The repo men coming for your last ASOS haul. A little like our recent feature on Robinhood suggested, despite the apparent success of Klarna, perhaps all that glitters is not gold…

… that Stripe only have a 4.6 on TrustPilot. That they’ll get to be in the spotlight – they certainly will not get to be in the spotlight, so that would be a lie, and lying isn’t very selfless. That growth and success aren’t always the bees-knees we think they are. As one disgruntled ex-employee (who does actually still recommend the firm, so make of that what you will) commented on Glassdoor, what was once a warm and fuzzy environment is now “pretty anonymous, increasingly cutthroat” and the “culture lends itself to overwork, imposter syndrome, anxiety”… eek.



Coming Soon
Who wins the company war, Klarna or Stripe?
Who wins the company war, Klarna or Stripe?
Who wins the company war, Klarna or Stripe?

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