[Funding Alert] Binny Bansal, GGV Invest In Gold Lending Start-Up Rupeek's $30 Mln Round
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Rupeek, a fintech start-up involved in gold lending, has raised $30 million in fresh funding led by GGV Capital. The investment round also saw the participation of Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal. This round comes not long after it raised a separate $30 million round in August last year from Bertelsmann India Investments, Accel Partners and Sequoia India.
Founded in 2015, the idea behind Rupeek was to tap into the massive gold that sits idle in many homes across the country and was built on the belief that fintech start-ups and banks could work collaboratively to launch innovative solutions and increase efficiencies in the market.
“Our plan is to scale existing and newer channels for gold monetization. We will use the fresh funds to invest in technology, customer acquisition and work towards improving the accessibility of credit in the country,” said chief executive officer Sumit Maniyar in a statement.
India is the largest importer of gold in the world, catering to the demands of a jewellery industry that has traditionally flourished. But while the consumption and demand is large, according to Rupeek, almost 90 per cent of it remains idle. Bengaluru-based Rupeek has ‘doorstep gold loans’ where it uses technology. It claims to be currently disbursing gold loans at an annual run rate of more than $200 million.
“With a marketplace of agents, Rupeek enables big, Indian banks to offer competitive gold loan products at the privacy of customer’s homes by sending agents to people’s homes and depositing the gold at the nearest branch of the partner bank that offered the loan,” said Hans Tung, managing partner at GGV Capital.
Rupeek has scaled up quickly and presently has presence across ten Indian cities Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Coimbatore and Jaipur.
Binny Bansal, who has been emerged as one of the most active investors in the start-up ecosystem since the acquisition of Flipkart, said, “their strong customer proposition and approach of partnering with banks is truly a game changer for the unorganized gold loans space in India."
The company said its goal is to increase the customer base from 100,000 to 1 million and provide accessibility of credit to a billion Indians by 2022 across 100 cities.
“They’ve demonstrated how young companies can successfully leverage the capital advantage of banks to open up market opportunities that are currently underserved – creating a winning proposition for its banking partners to gain share in the gold loan market”, said GV Ravishankar, managing director at Sequoia Capital India, an existing investor in Rupeek.