Buy now, pay later company Lipa Later Group on Monday announced its acquisition of regional e-commerce platform Sky.Garden.

Lipa Later says it will now be managing operations by Sky.Garden in Kenya in a move aimed at allowing customers to purchase goods and services electronically from a range of sellers.

Lipa Later Group CEO Erick Muli indicated that more than 10 thousand merchants had registered on the platform.

“Sky.Garden platform has worked with over 10 thousand merchants and hundreds of thousands of customers across the country and has been a very big enabler of e-commerce in the country,” said Muli.

The management of Sky.Garden, a Danish Holding Company, had in October 2022 filed for bankruptcy on grounds of financial challenges and hat they were looking for potential buyers.

SkyGarden raised Sh736.2 million in capital but startups have been facing tough times due to effects of Covid-19 pandemic on economies making it tough for them to source for funds.

Lipa Later Group, following the acquisition, is set to provide Sky.Garden’s customers with the buy now, pay later credit model by availing a flexible plan of monthly instalments.

Speaking at the event, Lipa Later CEO Eric Muli termed the acquisition timely as the fintech continues to build an end-to-end avenue that connects merchants to customers and vice versa.

“Guided by our objective to empower African businesses and consumers to do more by enabling e-commerce, financial inclusion, and shopping all on one centralized and fully integrated platform, our plan has always been to venture into e-commerce with unique value propositions for our consumers,” said Muli.

He added: “Sky Garden has done an incredible job and checks all those boxes. Lipa Later is no stranger to the e-commerce industry, having already established a strong presence in the online payment and finance sectors. This acquisition has greatly accelerated our plans of redefining the shopping experience for consumers.”

Sky.Garden, which had raised upwards of $6,000,000 (Sh736.2 million) before the purchase will now be fully owned by Lipa Later Group and will continue to operate using its name.

“Last month, we saw no other option than to file for insolvency. Today, I’m happy to see that Sky Garden will live on with new owners and new management,” said Sky Garden Martin Majlund.

He added: “We built a great product over time, and I believe Lipa Later has the potential to take Sky Garden to the next level. Through this acquisition, the vision of Sky Garden will continue to live on while retaining jobs and businesses on our platform.”

The Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) firm says it will work to expand Sky Garden by integrating it across other Lipa Later countries of operation including Rwanda, Uganda, and Nigeria.