BankBazaar Bags INR 45 Cr To Offer Contactless Financial Service

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Chennai-based online financial marketplace BankBazaar has raised INR 45 Cr in Series D1 funding from Walden SKT Venture Fund, which is a joint venture fund Walden International and South Korean conglomerate SK Group’s SKTA. Existing investors Amazon, Sequoia India, Experian and Eight Roads have also participated in the round.

According to the Ministry of Corporate Affairs filling, BankBazaar has issued 12,337 shares to Amazon for INR 5.6 Cr, 15,421 shared to Walden SKT Venture Fund for INR 7.1 Cr, 4,978 shares to GUS Holdings for INR 2.2 Cr, 5,782 shares to Sequoia for INR 2.6 Cr and 3,338 shares to Eight Roads for INR 1.5 Cr.

Adhil Shetty and Arjun Shetty have invested INR 2.6 Cr and INR 3.2 Cr, respectively.  Meanwhile, Isac, Sridharan and Srinivasan have invested INR 1.4 Cr, INR 99 Lakh and INR 1.4 Cr. The INR 29 Cr fundraise was also a part of the same round, however, the company has not disclosed the current dynamics yet.

BankBazaar plans to use this to develop technology and engineering required to accelerate contactless digital solutions across all lenders — banks and non-banking financial companies (NBFCs). With this, consumers will be able to get financial products like loans or credit cards, without meeting or paperwork.

Adhil Shetty, CEO and cofounder of BankBazaar told that the company launched its video know-your-customer (KYC) in the middle of the lockdown, after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) allowed it in January 2020. The feature has been coming in handy to disburse contactless financial services during the lockdown.

He elaborated that between October 2019 and February 2020, the company saw a 90% increase in monthly organic traffic, whereas its registered customer base rose to over 40 Mn. The company also claims to have witnessed a 53% increase in monthly revenue and a 15% reduction in costs during the same period. However, could not verify the claims independently as the  company as not yet filed the financial report for the FY 2020.

Adhil Shetty highlighted that the company was geared to be month-on-month EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) profitable by the end of the financial year 2020, before the lockdown was announced on March 24.

Though the company had faced minor disruption due to lockdown, with the video KYC, it was able to cater to customers again. Adhil Shetty added that May was better than April for the company and June is going to be better than March. He also claimed that BankBazaar will soon be able to get back to the month-on-month EBITDA profit number that it would have hit in March 2020. “Our goal is to get back to profit EBITDA number very soon,” Adhil Shetty added.

BankBazaar started operations in 2008 and was founded by former Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu executive Adhil, former Amazon executive Arjun and former Kraft employee Rati Shetty. The company sells tailor-made financial products like credit cards, car loans, personal loans, education loans and more on its website. With its paperless finance platform, it aims to create a secure and more transparent process for financial inclusion.

Back in 2017, the company launched a credit score product, which offers free monthly credit reports and tips to improve credit score. Adhil Shetty, previously, highlighted that the credit score product helped the company reach out to more users. So far, the company has served more than 2.3 Cr banks and has more than 50 banks on board.

“BankBazaar is creating the ‘Credit Karma’ of India with leading edge technology, a stellar team, and the support of an incredible set of strategic investors. We can’t wait to see how they help revolutionize the Indian financial services sector,” said Andrew Kau, general partner with Walden SKT Venture Fund or WSV.