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SBI Invests In Digital Payments Startup Cashfree

SBI Invests In Digital Payments Startup Cashfree

Bengaluru-based Cashfree was launched in 2015 by Akash Sinha and Reeju Datta

On its own, SBI has been building towards a larger fintech play for the past few years

Cashfree competes with other payment gateway solution providers such as Easebuzz, Razorpay, Instamojo, YAP, Y Combinator-backed Decentro and PayU

Digital payments and banking technology company Cashfree today announced that India’s largest lender, State Bank of India (SBI) has made an undisclosed investment in the organisation.

Bengaluru based Cashfree was launched in 2015 by Akash Sinha and Reeju Datta. Cashfree customers include leading internet companies such as CRED, BigBasket, Zomato, HDFC Ergo, Ixigo, Acko, Zoomcar, and Delhivery among others. SBI has been building towards a stronger fintech play for sometime now, especially with its focus on the digital banking platform Yono.

The company had previously raised $40.9 Mn (up to series B) as of November 2020. Cashfree competes with other payment gateway solution providers such as Easebuzz, Razorpay, Instamojo, YAP, Y Combinator-backed Decentro and PayU in the ever-growing payments API domain. Even the likes of Paytm, Phonepe and Google Pay have launched API solutions for service providers and digital products on their respective platforms.

“We are excited about our partnership with the country’s trusted and leading lender SBI. The investment from India’s largest bank shows its trust in Cashfree’s innovation and the way we are rapidly scaling up the payments business. The investment fits perfectly with our growth strategy as we continue to focus on customer experience and product innovation,” said Sinha, Co-Founder & CEO, Cashfree.

Earlier in the year, the finance ministry has raised concerns about SBI’s plans to set up a joint venture with HDFC Bank and Bank of Baroda (BoB) to apply for a new umbrella entity (NUE) licence and launch a rival retail payments network to the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). SBI was replaced by Tata Group in a consortium co-promoted by HDFC Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank and five others.

Incubated by payments pioneer PayPal, Cashfree is backed by Apis Partners, Smilegate and Y Combinator. Cashfree is used by businesses like Zomato, CRED, Nykaa, Delhivery, Acko, Shell, among others for various business payment needs like ecommerce payment collection, vendor payments, marketplace settlements etc. 

Cashfree processes transactions worth $20 Bn annually. Apart from India, Cashfree’s products are used in eight other countries including the USA, Canada, and the UAE. 

Cashfree plans on processing transactions worth $30 Bn by the end of the calendar year 2021. The company plans on expanding its operations across the country, beyond the existing offices in three cities, while growing its merchant-base to 5 lakhs from existing 55K.  Cashfree provides a full-stack payments solutions platform enabling over 100,000 growing businesses in India and across the globe to accept and disburse payment online through a single integration.

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