Europe Fintech for Good

ClearPay and Smart Works Create New Opportunities for UK and Ukranian Women

Clearpay, the buy now, pay later (BNPL) payments organisation, has partnered with UK charity Smart Works, which exists to give women the confidence they need to secure employment and change the trajectory of their lives. The new partnership will give even more women in the UK the tools to succeed and achieve their goals.

The partnership will kick off with Clearpay employees volunteering at Smart Works centres and at the charity’s upcoming event, The Telegraph x Smart Works Fashion Sale at Somerset House (November 19 – 20), which will welcome around 800 shoppers, with 100 per cent of the proceeds going directly to Smart Works.

As well as supporting the charity at this and other fashion sale events, Clearpay will give a financial contribution, and will organise employee fundraising activities and ongoing volunteering opportunities.

Rich Bayer, UK country manager at Clearpay, said: “Smart Works is Clearpay’s first charity partner in the UK and we are proud to work with an organisation that provides important emotional and practical support to women – giving them confidence, self-belief and the tools to succeed, so they can lift themselves out of unemployment. These important efforts exactly align with Clearpay’s mission to create financial freedom for all.”

Kate Stephens, Smart Works CEO, said: “Smart Works is a community dedicated to supporting and empowering unemployed women through the transformational power of coaching and clothing. We have ambitious plans to grow our service and double the number of women we help, reaching 10,000 per year by 2025.

“We are delighted to announce our partnership with Clearpay, whose generous support will be instrumental in helping us realise this goal. With a shared belief that fashion can be used as a force for good, we welcome Clearpay to our community and look forward to shaping an innovative partnership together.”

Smart Works uses the power of high-quality clothing and one-on-one coaching to help women see their true potential and be the best version of themselves at a crucial moment. Many of the women who come to the charity have experienced homelessness, domestic abuse, been out of work caring for a loved one or been unemployed for extended periods of time. The charity also assists refugees, and in recent months Smart Works has helped an increasing number of Ukrainian women.

Like Clearpay, Smart Works’ roots are in fashion. The charity believes in using fashion as a force for good, and partners with a number of British retailers including Burberry, M&S, Nicholas Kirkwood, Mother of Pearl, Hobbs, ME+EM and Whistles. These are just some of the brands that provide high-quality clothing for Smart Works to repurpose for those in need, also offering brands a sustainable outlet for excess stock.

The Smart Works service works in the following way:

  • Smart Works receives referrals from organisations (including job centres, prison services, youth charities, domestic violence charities, refugee charities, homelessness charities).
  • Once a client has been referred, they are invited to a one-hour dressing consultation to help find a high-quality interview outfit to fill them with confidence.
  • This is followed by a one-to-one coaching session to give valuable interview preparation and unlock her potential.
  • 72 per cent of clients go on to get the job within one month of their Smart Works appointment.
  • Once the client has got the job she is invited to a second dressing, where she will get an additional five pieces, for free, to create a capsule work wardrobe.

Five facts about Clearpay:

  • The service is completely free for customers who pay on time.
  • If a customer misses a payment, their account is paused so that they cannot accrue more debt or fall into revolving debt.
  • Capped late fees apply for late payment instalments.
  • Globally, 90 per cent of Clearpay transactions are made with a debit card.
  • Over the 12 months ended March 2022, 95 per cent of instalments were paid on time and 98 per cent of purchases incurred no late fees.


  • Francis is a journalist and our lead LatAm correspondent, with a BA in Classical Civilization, he has a specialist interest in North and South America.

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