Buy now, pay later is expanding beyond retail into other sectors to help consumers pay things like medical bills and school fees.

Earlier this month, BNPL mover and shaker Openpay (ASX:OPY) was signed on by telehealth stock 1st Group (ASX:1ST) as an alternative for patients struggling to pay their medical bills.

And Openpay has already made moves to penetrate the education and memberships markets.

The company signed up Golftec Club Marconi and the North Gold Coast Seahawks basketball association as its first clients in the membership space.

Openpay boss Michael Eidel told Stockhead many of these businesses had been hit by COVID-19, in having to close their doors, but they could benefit.

“We see a massive pipeline across both new verticals [education and memberships], which we are working on and on-boarding more of these kind of companies over the next period of time,” he said.

“Our customers are people who manage their lifestyle more broadly with our tool to be smart about spreading payment over time and managing their cash flow.

“I think this is for us the next category to move strongly into, because we see a lot of demand for our customer base, they’re very receptive to these new areas of their lifestyles where they can use our product.”

Eidel said these initial client wins were part of a “soft launch” to investigate the best way BNPL could work in these sectors before going for a hard launch in the next few months.


Deferred lockdown spending back in spades

With businesses having been allowed to reopen and people now out spending what they couldn’t during the COVID lockdown, BNPL is becoming even more popular.

Dental play 1300 Smiles (ASX:ONT) told its shareholders yesterday it witnessed a gain in revenue in June, not only up from April but even higher than June 2019.

The automotive sector is also the target of a buying frenzy, with several stocks reporting increased activity in recent weeks including Bapcor (ASX:BAP) and National Tyre & Wheel (ASX:NTD) .

Openpay’s Eidel said the company also noticed the surge among these two sectors, which Openpay was already focused on.

“Growth had been subdued but in June and July its been picking up again. For us it’s a great opportunity to grow across both channels,” he said.