Top 5 industry-disrupting companies in the financial services sector in India!
Digital payment for Gen-Z and millennials is no doubt the new normal, but contemporary financial services have gone beyond that. Integrating into the areas of investments, loans, lending and insurance, only to name a few, India’s financial services sector is evolving rapidly as consumers across age groups have moved from traditional financial systems to digitised methods and products.
The rise of the financial services sector in India has been such that with 7441 new start-ups, India now comes third after the US and China in terms of market size. In a recent report, The Boston Consulting Group states that India’s financial services market is set to reach $150 Bn by 2025 with immense scope for innovation. With 22 unicorns and 33 soonicorns, Indian financial services market is also the second largest sector in India’s startup ecosystem after eCommerce in terms of the number of unicorns produced. Moreover, the sector is poised to produce most future unicorns in India over the coming years.
The customer-centric services of the growing sector have completely revolutionised India’s banking, lending and financial services. Digital wallet services, UPI, BNPL (Buy Now, Pay Later), and digital escrow are just a few examples of how India is leading the way in financial innovation. It has increased the number of individuals who have access to credit, lowered transaction costs and broadened the payment methods available to consumers and businesses.
Listed below are the top 5 industry-disrupting companies in the financial services sector in India:
MobiKwik is the largest digital credit player and the second largest mobile wallet in India. The company has expanded its suite of financial products for consumers and merchants from payments to digital credit and investments. Their mission is to build a world-class neobanking platform for Bharat!
Founded in 2009 by Bipin Preet Singh and Upasana Taku, MobiKwik today has 127 million registered users who can make payments for all their daily life needs, including utility bills, eCommerce shopping, food delivery, and shopping at large retail chains, mom & pop (kirana) stores, etc. across a 3.7 million strong merchant network.
With credit card penetration in India at an abysmal 3.5%, MobiKwik launched digital credit in 2018 with an aim to address the credit needs of a large and growing base of digitally savvy users. With 30 million credit pre-approved users, MobiKwik is focused on providing this unserved Indian population their first experience of credit.
MobiKwik is a fast-growing scaled fintech which turned profitable in 2021 (2 profitable quarters Q3 and Q4 FY22), setting itself apart from all its peers. It ended the financial year 2022 with INR 5.4 bn in revenue, recording 80% YoY growth.
Cred is an Indian fintech company based in Bangalore. Founded in 2018 by Kunal Shah, it is a reward-based credit card payments app. Cred also lets users make house rent payments and provides short-term credit lines.
Cred is a free credit card bill payment mobile application. Available for download on iOS and Android platforms, it simplifies the bill payment process and rewards users for paying their card bills on time.
Cred invested for a three-year affiliation with IPL and decided to go all in on advertising. It launched a series of TV ads featuring yesteryear Bollywood stars and singers, including Anil Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit and Govinda. For IPL season 2022, Cred was back with more ads centred around invoking nostalgia, parodying old Doordarshan (Indian national TV channel) gems like the Nirma ad.
Protium is an Engineering-Driven, Pan-India lending major with over 80 branches in 60 cities across the country and empowers millions of credit-seekers through the power of cutting-edge technology and smarter risk assessment.
A credit and finance solutions company aimed at small and medium-sized businesses, Protium is a game changer in its segment. In a radical departure from the standard model of a fintech, it has adopted an integrated approach to reach its customers by building a strong online and offline presence in the country. Founded in 2019, Protium has serviced more than 5 lakh customers and has disbursed more than INR 3,000 crore in the last two years.
The company makes convenient credit available and accessible through its various sub-units, namely, Protium Finance, Protium Money, and Protium Sakshara, which lend to MSMEs, consumers, and educational institutions, respectively. It uses proprietary models to assess revenues and growth to customise financial solutions for its customers. Protium has a strong digital and on-ground presence that allows it to understand the needs of its clients better. Based on the requirement of the customer, it offers secured and unsecured loans up to INR 5 crores to small businesses in tier 1, 2, and 3 cities and personal loans to individuals.
Siply is a Bangalore-based tech-enabled micro-savings platform. Siply helps underserved masses such as contract workers, blue-collar workers, gig economy workers, and small business owners inculcate savings behaviour through sachet financial services where the investment can be as low as INR 1.00 to build a more productive, inclusive and financially secure Bharat.
Founded in July 2020 by Sousthav Chakrabarty and Anil Bhat, Siply wants to be the preferred financial services brand to the 40 crore Indians who are not yet a part of the formal banking system. The company is building a platform that is tailor-made to serve the specific needs of this segment, which has so far been largely overlooked by current financial institutions like banks and mutual fund houses.
So far, Siply – India ka Savings app has enabled over 3.2 million users to achieve financial independence through flexible micro-savings and a wide range of reliable investment instruments. Currently, users on Siply have collectively made more than 11 million transactions amounting to a total savings of over Rs 380 crores. The company also launched a Micro-Credit service in July 2021 and has disbursed more than 1.84 Lakh loans for a total volume of more than Rs 185 crores. Recently, the company has also piloted a Gold Jewellery Scheme, a goal-based scheme where users can choose from a range of jewellery items and buy them in instalments for as low as INR 1 whenever they want, without any fixed schedule, and receive 24 Karat BIS Hallmarked Gold coins or Gold Jewellery that’s BIS Hallmarked at completion.
Castler is a pioneer in the field of Digital Escrow in India. Founded by Vineet Singh and Dinesh Kumar, both startup veterans, in 2021, the company endeavours to build a transaction banking-focused escrow banking solution for enterprises for both domestic and cross-border transactions. It also wants to democratise the escrow product for mass adoption amongst consumers and MSMEs to eliminate fraud.
Castler leverages technology, expertise, and innovation to make escrow services more accessible and convenient for enterprises and consumers alike by digitising the escrow process. The platform shields businesses with its dedicated multi-party protection system and different levels of authentication. Around 1 lakh companies in India use escrow accounts, according to industry estimates. Escrow deposits worldwide are worth $100Bn, and the market is poised to grow to $260Bn by 2030.
Currently, the company is the trusted escrow solution for over 150+ enterprises and processes over INR 1000+ crores in transactions every month. The new-age startup has recorded over 6500% growth in GTV in just one year.
Castler’s proprietary Digital Escrow Banking Suite provides its clients with a unique ‘Open, Own & Operate’ escrow solution that ensures trust and transparency in every transaction.