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Avanti Finance: The Micro Loans Lender With support from some of the biggest names in Indian business, including Ratan Tata and Nandan Nilekani, Avanti Finance was founded in 2018 with the goal to provide timely, reasonably priced financial services to the next 100 million underserved or underprivileged households.

By Minakshi Sangwan

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Rahul Gupta, CEO of Avanti Finance

India has always been a centre for digital innovation, especially in the area of financial inclusion. With a digital lending platform that attempts to provide even the poorest clients with accessible microloans with the goal of producing revenue, Avanti Finance is a nascent player in the industry.

Launched in 2018 with backing from some of India's most well-known corporate giants, such as Ratan Tata and Nandan Nilekani, Avanti Finance aims to provide timely, reasonably priced financial services to the next 100 million underserved or underprivileged households.

"Our goal is to create a cutting-edge platform for financial inclusion that will empower low-income and vulnerable households to improve their financial situation by lowering barriers and supporting sustainable livelihoods," says Rahul Gupta, CEO of Avanti Finance.

With customised options for repayment frequencies, moratoriums, etc., the startup claims to offer more than two hundred livelihood-related loan variants that assess the repayment capabilities depending on the borrower's cash flows.

"We are building a scalable, asset-light, and capital-efficient model, underpinned by our technology combined with the power of a highly curated network of community-linked partners," shares Rahul.

Over 600,000 low-income households nationwide are allegedly served by the Bengaluru-based platform. It claims to serve clients in more than 20,000 villages and is operational in 26 states and 370 districts.

According to Rahul, 90% of its customers are women, over 50% are in the agri and agri-allied space, and the rest are micro-enterprises. About 40% of its new volumes are via co-lending with reputed financial institutions.

"Given the positive, frictionless, and quick turnaround experienced by our customers, our retention rates are trending upwards of 30% despite being a relatively new entity. We expect this number to go up significantly once we have more established vintages," Rahul adds.

The platform states that it has grown two times already this year and hopes to keep growing at this rate for the next 24 months while maintaining profitability and careful risk management.

Rahul says, "In the next two years, we want to serve three million households and reach an AUM of INR 5000 crores."

Facts:

Amount of funding received: Equity funding appx INR 500 crore

Year of launch: 2018

Number of employees: 93

No. of app downloads: Not a B2C company. Its app is whitelisted for use only for authorised entities and their personnel who onboard its users.

Minakshi Sangwan

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