Kunal Shah’s second entrepreneurial journey has been a trivia of multiple successes— from onboarding institutional investors at seed stage to overwhelming user response. Cred, a credit card bill payment startup, raised $30 Mn in its seed funding round and is reportedly in talks to raise $120 Mn in a fresh funding round.
According to the Ministry of Corporate Affairs filings accessed by Inc42, the company has now raised a bridge Series B round of INR 27.55 Cr ($4 Mn) from Sequoia Capital India. The company issued 20,179 Series B CCCPS shares priced Rs 13,653.31 each. The tip was reported by paper.vc.
Interestingly, prior to this round, the company has been issuing Series A and Series A1 CCPS at INR 3010.42 till April 2019. The sudden jump in the premium value of each share has come based on the valuation of March 31, 2019.
The company said in its filings that the Bridge Series B funds will be used for growth, expansion, marketing and general corporate activities of the company. With this investment, Sequoia will now have 12.68% stake in Cred.
Launched in 2018, Cred is a members-only app which gives exclusive rewards for paying your credit card bill in a timely manner. Eligible users with good credit scores can use the app to understand and navigate their credit card statements, particularly with regard to hidden charges, and they are rewarded accordingly.
The company has partnered with brands such as Airbnb, Cure.fit, BookMyShow, Urban Ladder, FreshMenu and ixigo among others for rewards, experiences and upgrades every month. The banks associated with Cred include HDFC, ICICI, Kotak, Axis among others.
In the long run, the company plans on building its consumer base through credit card bill payments and rewards and then develop high-end loyalty and offer other services, including insurance.
Cred has been recently seen tying up with influencers for its promotional activities and has been spending heavily on rewarding its bill paying users. However, not everyone has been satisfied with the rewards as well. There have been reviews by users saying that engagement is super low, payment addition to actual cards needs 1-2 working days, lack of useful offers etc.
Kunal Shah is a serial entrepreneur who earlier launched ventures such as PaisaBack, a cashback and promotional discount campaign platform for retailers; and FreeCharge, a coupon-based app for mobile recharge. While he shutdown PaisaBack to launch FreeCharge, Kunal Shah sold the latter to Snapdeal in a whopping $450 Mn deal in 2015. Snapdeal then later sold FreeCharge to Axis Bank.
As one of the hottest sectors of the Indian startup ecosystem, fintech has been bringing investor as well as customer attention. Inc42 in its Annual Tech Startup Funding report 2018 noted that fintech startups raised $1.4 Bn across 121 deals.