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ISME ACE, FinTech Accelerator, Announces First Batch of Startups with $1M Investment

The Startups are mentored by leading experts from financial services industry, marketing business development, and successful entrepreneurs.

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ISME ACE, India’s largest FinTech Accelerator has announced its first batch of Startups comprising of 6 new age FinTech companies, selected diligently from amongst 547 applications received from 23 countries. The selected Startups address various emerging segments of new age financial services including alternate lending, banking technology and investment/wealth management technology. Each startup has been provided USD 100,000 to USD 200,000 of capital, in exchange for a minority shareholding.

Raakhe Kapoor Tandon, Founder of ISME ACE, shared her vision of ISME ACE - “ISME ACE aims to become the focal point of the FinTech ecosystem in India, for Startups, Corporates & Investors, by promoting FinTech innovation revolving around five major financial activities - pay, borrow, lend, insure or invest.”

“The financial services industry is at an inflexion point owing to new technologies such as Blockchain, AI, IoT, and Big Data, and Government initiatives such as IndiaStack, along with higher mobile & internet penetration. ISME ACE aims to leverage this change, by promoting and investing in disruptive B2B/B2C FinTech Startups. We plan to accelerate over 100 Startups in next 3 years”, adds Raakhe.

All the 6 FinTech Startups are generating revenues with market-ready products/services and are leveraging ISME ACE as a plug and play launch-pad for the next phase of growth. Aparajit Bhandarkar, Chief Acceleration Officer at ISME ACE, said, “The focus is to share our experience / networks in financial services and scale up the Startups from hereon. We may infuse additional growth capital if required. We intend to stay invested and work closely with the Startups with no plans to exit before Series C stage, or even IPO / trade sale in case of couple of Startups.”

ISME ACE has developed a collaborative ecosystem to nurture and accelerate FinTech Startups by partnering with Microsoft, IBM & AWS for technology, Indian Angel Network, TiE & LetsVenture for investor & entrepreneurial network support, KPMG for knowledge & CFO support, Luthra & Luthra for advisory support, Let’s Talk Payments as innovation partner, and AWFIS as shared work space infrastructure partner. Startups have been offered a state of the art tech enabled workspace at Lower Parel, Mumbai.

ISME ACE is part of the Indian School of Management & Entrepreneurship (‘ISME’). ISME provides Management & Entrepreneurship education to further Government of India’s vision of Startup India. ISME’s dual nature of programs, i.e. management and entrepreneurship provides students with practical foundation in strategy, finance and marketing that will create opportunities for career acceleration. ISME focuses on developing and nurturing job creators rather than job-seekers. ISME has partnered with the Babson College, US and has become a part of the ‘Babson Collaborative for Entrepreneurship Education’ which enables working with academic institutions and other training organizations to build capacity for entrepreneurial education across India.

The Startups are mentored by leading experts from financial services industry, marketing business development, and successful entrepreneurs. ISME ACE has partnered with relevant stakeholders to review and certify the technology stack of Startups with respect to security, scalability and efficiency.

ISME ACE Startups:

Moneytor is the only Startup disrupting the lending collections space in India, through an automation tool for stressed receivable management. The tool is sold to lending institutions to help recover retail loans in default. With retail credit growing at over 17% annually, unsecured retail credit growing at over 23% annually, the market Moneytor aims to capture is massive. Anubhav Singh, one of the founders of Moneytor has background in Debt Servicing and understands the nuances involved in recovery management. Ayush Srivastava & Anupam Sarawagi, with prior successful Startup stints, are the other two co-founders. Moneytor has received co-investment from Satyen Kothari, 500 Startups and Zypher Trading LLP.

Open Financial, founded by Anish Achuthan, Mabel Chacko and Ajeesh Achuthan - successful serial entrepreneurs and ex-PayU, is an SME focused neo-banking service which combines payments, banking and accounting into one simple platform to help businesses efficiently manage payables/receivables reconciliation, invoicing and book keeping. Within a single month of product launch, Open has achieved significant traction with over 100 Cr worth of transactions expected to be processed through its platform within the first year of operations. Deena Jacob, former Head of Finance, TaxiForSure has joined Open as Head, Revenue & Growth.

Trendlyne.com is an integrated platform for proven & back-tested stock scores & strategies, stock market analytics, research reports, visualization tools and trending business news. The founders Amber Pabreja and Devi Yesodharan aim to bring stock market analytics to ordinary investors, analysts, and advisors, with the help of technology. While Amber has a rich technology background of 14 years, Devi is an IIM Calcutta alumna, with previous stints with Economic Times and UIDAI.

Trendlyne.com has seen impressive organic growth, with a six-fold increase in monthly visits to its website over the last six months. The site now delivers 2 million pageviews per month. The startup is also in talks with several large brokerage firms which are keen to license its services. Trendlyne.com has also received co-investment from Family Office Fund initiated by the Bhagchandka Group.

Artoo is heralding the future of MSME lending by leveraging artificial intelligence and Big Data analytics to enable lenders to evaluate and disburse loans to borrowers having a limited digital footprint. The credit gap in the MSME segment was reported to be pegged at 56%, which is equivalent to 17,50,000 crores, exemplifying the large market that Artoo aims to target. “The Startup is exploring a collaboration with a large private bank for rural retail lending with the goal of reaching disbursals worth 10,000 crores in next 3 years” says Sameer Segal, the founder of Artoo, who is passionate about inclusive technology and has been recognized as one of Asia-Pacific's most promising young social entrepreneurs by the Paragon100 Fellowship.

Cashcow is an online marketplace for financial products which aims to bring a holistic solution for the retail banking needs of customers at their doorstep. It digitizes the user journey by empowering micro-entrepreneurs to offer financial products to loan seekers through a robust platform driven by artificial intelligence. Co-founders, Manish Aggarwal and Gaurav Goyal were ex-CBO and ex-CPO of another alternate lending Startup Rubique, prior to founding Cashcow. The other co-founders, Sarfraz & Mustafa are successful entrepreneurs who bring experience in operations and marketing respectively. Co-founder, Gaurav says, “Since joining the ISME ACE cohort, disbursements of credit cards & personal loans have doubled, and that of home loans have increased by 50%. We are now venturing into the car, gold and education loans space.”

SmartCoin is a consumer micro-lending startup providing access to credit to millions of mobile users belonging to untapped segments. Their mobile app based platform assesses a customer's risk profile based on advanced machine learning and data science over thousands of traditional and non-traditional variables. SmartCoin’s innovative credit scoring technology allows it to minimize operating costs and default rates compared to its competitors. SmartCoin is founded by IIT/IIM alumni with over 30 years of experience across finance and consumer tech products. Loan disbursals have grown fivefold in last six months as per CEO & co-founder, Rohit Garg.


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