Axios Pro Exclusive Content

Latitude and Humm's broken BNPL deal

Lucinda Shen
Jun 17, 2022

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Latitude Financial, a lending and insurance startup in Australia, agreed to terminate its A$335 million deal to buy Humm Group's buy-now-pay-later business.

Why it matters: The broken tie-up won't be the only example of a deal done in better market conditions that ended up doomed.

Background: Latitude offered to buy Humm's unit in mostly stock back in January. But that was when shares of Latitude and Humm were trading about 30% and 51% higher, respectively.

  • Still, Humm's board urged shareholders to take the deal. Humm's business swung to unprofitable in recent months, per the Australian Financial Review.

Of note: Investors have soured on lending businesses in particular, including "buy now, pay later" players. Many worry that, after reaching sky-high valuations last year, lending companies may not be able to live up to the hype in a rising interest rates environment.

Thought bubble: In today's market, BNPL is looking more like it stands for buy-not-pray-lots.

Go deeper