India: Lendingkart raises $87m equity funding led by Fullerton Financial

SME lending platform Lendingkart Technologies Private Limited has raised over $87 million in equity funding.

The Series C round of funding was led by Singapore’s Fullerton Financial Holdings Pte Ltd, along with participation from existing investors, the company said in a statement.

With this, Lendingkart Group’s cumulative equity and debt raising will exceed $173 million, of which $114 million was through equity route.

The fintech company has been on a fundraising spree. Last month, it raised $4.7 million (Rs 30 crore) in non-convertible debentures from Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden N.V. (FMO), a Dutch development bank that invests in growth and frontier markets.

Prior to that, Lendingkart had raised Rs 25 crore in debt from State Bank of India, taking its total debt to Rs 378 crore largely from non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) such as Aditya Birla Financial Services, IFMR Capital and Mannapuram Finance.

“The funds from this round will enable Lendingkart Group to further strengthen its technological and analytics capabilities. The Group also aims to expand its credit product offerings to deepen its reach to small enterprises and reach out to underserved micro enterprises,” Lendingkart said.

Lendingkart Group has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Fullerton India Capital Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Fullerton Financial, regarding possible opportunities and initiatives to support their respective businesses.

“Today, we are witnessing the rapid advancement and adoption of technological innovation in India. We believe that the deployment of technology to develop scalable and accessible financial services platforms, incorporating big data analytics and machine learning, will be critical to any lending business serving the underbanked and underserved customers in India,” GAN Chee Yen, CEO of Fullerton Financial Holdings said.

Since its inception, Lendingkart Finance, the NBFC arm of Lendingkart Group, claims to have disbursed over 20,000 loans in more than 950 cities helping more than 13,000 SMEs. It uses technology tools based on big data analytics and machine learning algorithms to evaluate creditworthiness.

Other startups in this segment include ZipLoan, Capital Float, Quikrupee, SMEcorner, Innoviti, and Biz2credit. In October last year, ZipLoan raised $3 million Series A funding from Matrix Partners India, with participation from existing investors, including WaterBridge Ventures, Whiteboard Capital and former Capital18 MD, Sarbvir Singh. In August, Capital Float raised $45 million in a Series C round led by Palo Alto-based fintech investor Ribbit Capital.

Credit Suisse acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Lendingkart Technologies.

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