SYDNEY, AAP – Afterpay has confirmed it is closer to listing on a US stock market after North America overtook Australia and New Zealand as the biggest region for sales.

The buy now, pay later provider on Tuesday published sales figures which showed people in Canada and the US spent $2.6 billion using the service in the three months to March 31.

The spending constituted a rise of 167 per cent on the same quarter last year.

People in Australia and New Zealand spent $2.1 billion using Afterpay, while those in the UK spent $0.5 billion using the Clearpay brand.

The company said it was working with advisers to explore options for a US listing.

“While Afterpay intends to remain an Australian headquartered company, our shareholder base is increasingly becoming more globally focused,” it said.

“A US listing would further accommodate this growing interest.”

The company said there was no timing for the listing.

Afterpay has had a meteoric rise since it first offered shares on the Australian market for $1 each in 2017.

Co-founders Anthony Eisen and Nicholas Molnar remain in control.

Afterpay makes most of its money by charging businesses a fee for each sale using its platform.

The company’s third quarter report only referred to the overall value of sales, and did not include figures such as revenue.

Afterpay is still to record a profit.

Shares were up 0.15 per cent to $126.39 at 1132 AEST. They have traded for as much as $160.05.