Making Investing Easy for The Young
The idea behind launching Groww was driven by the aim to make investing, which is often seen as complex matter, simple for the masses using technology
“Customer obsession is at the forefront of everything we do at Groww,” says Lalit Keshre, co-founder and CEO of the investment platform.
This is one of the key strategies Groww’s founders--Keshre, Harsh Jain, Neeraj Singh and Ishan Bansal--have sworn by since the company’s inception in May 2016. Be it the company’s simple UI/UX, jargon free in-app communication or the paperless tech-enabled onboarding process, every feature on the platform is introduced to ensure a frictionless user journey, says Keshre.
In the last five years since its launch, Bengaluru-headquartered Groww has become a Unicorn--startups that are valued $1 billion or more--after raising $83 million in its Series D funding round led by Tiger Global along with participation from its existing investors Sequoia Capital India, Ribbit Capital, YC Continuity and Propel Venture Partners. The company has raised a total of $141.8 million so far.
Journey So Far
The idea behind launching Groww was driven by the aim to make investing, which is often seen as complex matter, simple for the masses using technology. “We picked up the mantle of helping millions of Indians become investment-ready from the day we started,” said Keshre. The idea came about from the founders’ own experience of purchasing financial products, the process of which they realised is opaque and complex.
After studying user’s major pain points, the company started as a direct mutual fund distribution platform with three mutual funds offerings. Alongside, they also devised a minimum viable product (MVP)--a prototype with just enough features that can be used by early customers to get their feedback and further build on the product--with features like robo advisory, risk analysis and customer profiling.
Six months into experimenting, the founders of Groww realised that the pressing problem ailing investors was a seamless way to invest in the markets so they dropped all features and continued to build on its MF distribution platform.
Currently, the platform allows its users to invest in stocks, futures and options (F&Os), US stocks and gold, among other services. The company claims to have opened 30 lakh demat accounts since the launch of direct stock investing feature in June last year and has a user base of more than 1.5 crore registered users across 900 cities in India.
Bengaluru-based Groww claims to be among the top five stock brokers in India.
The Covid Nudge
It is established that Covid-19 prompted everything to go digital and investing is no exception. As a result, Groww has had a good run in the last one year. “The pandemic has accelerated a lot of digital transformation in the country. The economic uncertainty due to COVID nudged millions of Indians to re-look at how they managed their money,” said Keshre. Out of its total userbase of 15 million, Groww claims to have added 7 million in the six months between November 2020 and April 2021 alone.
“Many of the new investors were looking for platforms that could provide them with an easy, hassle-free, and paperless experience. Our focus on a simplified investing experience along with our customer education initiatives helped us gain favor among many of the new retail investors.”
The company has been running several awareness initiatives through the last one year. “We are running a pan India investor awareness campaign called ‘Ab India Karega Invest’ which is hosted in our weekly live session format. We invite India’s top fund managers and CEOs to answer investment-related questions and guide investors. We have been able to educate more than 10 million people till date through this initiative,” Keshre explains.
“Through our youtube channel we try to educate investors about concepts of investing, and developments in the market. So far we have been able to educate more than 50 million people in India through our Youtube channel. We had recently concluded our first virtual event called Thrive, where we invited some of the smartest minds of the country to talk about growth and wealth creation. Our event witnessed 15,000 live attendees.”True to the company’s original motto of making investing easy for the young, investors under the age of 30 constitute two-third of the investor base on Groww.