AI-driven financial lending platform CASHe has raised INR 140 Cr ($18.7 Mn) in equity funding from Singapore-based holding company TSLC Pte Ltd. According to the startup, the latest round of funding brings its balance sheet size to INR 800 Cr.
Founded by V. Raman Kumar in 2016, CASHe is a non-bank, mobile-first, personal loan platform that claims to serve underserved digital customers in the country. It aims to democratise credit access for millenials.
It disburses loans in the range of INR 1,000 and INR 3,00,000 with an approximate APR (annual percentage rate) of higher than 30.42% with a minimum repayment tenure of three months, and maximum repayment tenure of 12 months. It also seems to charge a processing fee of 3%.
However, its application listing on the Google Play Store has received a lot of negative reviews from users who claim that the verification process is too time-consuming.
With the freshly-infused capital, the startup plans to boost its profitability and enhance its product lines to include BNPL, credit line and embedded car products. CASHe is looking to expand its loan book to INR 3,000 Cr by increasing its user base to 1 Mn from a claimed 4 lakh presently.
“We have set our goals to become a full-stack, credit led financial wellness platform of choice for the millennial and Gen Z cohort. The new capital infusion reflects a meaningful maturity level of CASHe’s balance sheet, profitability and business model,” said V. Raman Kumar, founder chairman of CASHe.
Young adults in the country, those below the age of 25, are availing more short-term low-value credit. This phenomenon is driving personal loans which have grown 2.3 times by value and 3.8 times by volume in disbursal from FY17 to FY21.
A large number of these borrowers are taking loan for the first time through digital means where lenders are assessing them using advanced analytics and AI/ML tools.
Many lenders, especially small banks, are playing the numbers game as the volume of borrowers increases rapidly even as the volume of these loans shrink. Between the same period, the average ticket size of personal loans has shrunk 40% to INR 1.5 lakh from INR 2.4 lakh.
“In the last few years, CASHe has demonstrated that it is ready to seize every opportunity. Even during the two waves of Covid, it continues to forge ahead through its strong accelerating momentum predicated on the strength of its technology, business analytics, people and processes,” said Joginder Rana, vice chairman and managing director of the startup.
Inc42 broke an exclusive story of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) startup Simpl raising $40 Mn in a Series B funding round a couple of months ago. The round was led by Valar Ventures in association with existing investor IA Ventures.