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Press release - April 26, 2022 8:00AM

Axel Johnson’s fintech startup Humla tailors financial services for retail and initiates collaboration with SEBx

Axel Johnson’s fintech startup Humla develops financial services for the future of retail. Humla is now entering into a strategic partnership with Swedish bank SEB’s innovation studio SEBx to develop services based on the bank’s new platform for Banking as a Service.

Retail is predicted to change more in the next 10 years than it has over the past century. The increasing pace of digitalization – driven in great part by the pandemic – is creating ever-increasing expectations of the customer experience both for e-commerce as well as in physical stores. At the same time, regulations such as the EU open banking directive PSD2 along with API-based technology such as Banking as a Service are creating opportunities for consumer companies to develop and offer financial services without having to become banks themselves. This means that retailers can now offer financial services under their own brands and thereby retain a direct relationship with their customers in areas such as digital wallets, debit and credit cards, loyalty programs, financing, savings and home mortgages.

With all this in mind, Axel Johnson – whose companies have more than 1.5 million customer meetings every day – has founded the fintech startup Humla. Humla will tailor financial services that drive growth and create new revenue streams, as well as help retailers strengthen their relationships with customers and gain new insights from data.

“As a part of Axel Johnson, we have a unique opportunity to collaborate with some of Sweden’s most successful retail companies. Building on that knowledge base, Humla will create new financial products that enable a more personalized customer experience, data-driven offers and smart payments with the help of the latest technology. We aim to strengthen the retail business and want to be a positive force for change in financial services with products designed with respect for customer’s best interest and their integrity. The collaboration with SEBx gives us a unique combination of a technical platform built with the latest technology and the security of a well-established bank,” says Emil Berg Eckerrot, CEO of Humla.

In order to offer payment solutions and financial services, Humla is now entering into a strategic partnership with Swedish bank SEB's solution for Banking-as-a-Service, SEBx.

“With our cloud-based Banking-as-a-Service platform, we can help Humla build new products and embed financial services in their customer journeys without them having to become banks themselves. SEBx is built on top of SEB’s banking license, which allows us to be a complete provider of financial services,” says Christoffer Malmer, Head of SEBx. "We want to collaborate and co-create with innovative partners, and we look forward to continuing to work with the team at Humla."

Tailored financial services will play a central role in the development of the future of retail. With Banking as a Service, Humla can focus on what is most important in both brick-and-mortar and online retail: the customer, the customer offering and the customer experience. Humla is now exploring a number of initiatives within the Axel Johnson Group and the first product launch will be later in the year.

“With Humla, we are gathering cutting-edge expertise within financial services, digital customer experience and advanced data analysis. We are eagerly look forward to seeing the new customer values and insights that emerge from the products that Humla develops,” says Sara Öhrvall, Board Chair of Humla and COO of Axel Johnson.

For more information, please contact:
David Salsbäck, Director of Sustainability and Communications, Axel Johnson, +46 (0)8-701 61 05,

Emil Berg Eckerrot, CEO, Humla,

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Humla AB is a fintech start-up, founded and funded by the Axel Johnson Group.

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