This Time Has Turned Out Optimistic For The Fin-tech Industry Where Companies Are Partnering For Its Vertical And Horizontal Growth: Amit Nigam, Executive Director & COO, BANKIT
In an exclusive chat with BW BusinessWorld, Amit Nigam, Executive Director & COO, BANKIT talks about the startup and more.
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BANKIT, as a fintech startup is committed to provide seamless, fast and secure Banking financial services to the last mile of the society. A large population of the country is still not a part of the digital economy and banking system. Lack of ATMs and bank branches in rural and semi-urban areas is still a concern which hampers financial inclusion. BANKIT is trying to bridge this digital divide and offer financial and non-financial services to the masses via B2B2C agent outlets.
What was the initial capital investment for the startup?
BANKIT is a cash-rich company that started its operation from 2017. We have positive credit and cash flow transactions as we invested the amount initially in 2013 to start the organization have been recovered.
BANKIT registered 102% growth in May. What were your revenue figures from previous years? Was it a change of business strategies that led to a growth this year?
As we know that how badly pandemic has impacted businesses across the world whereas, very few sectors have been benefited in this time. Considering our own, we have seen growth in the GTV and revenues in the last two months. This time has turned out optimistic for the fin-tech industry where companies are partnering for its vertical and horizontal growth. Our revenue growth jumped to 91% in April and 102% in May which has incredibly profited the business.
In FY 2019-2020, BANKIT touched the GTV of 13,000 crores (approx) with a revenue of 116 crores and expecting growth to 2-3 times in the current year. Moreover, we used to on-board 500 agents a month for our business, which has now increased to 3,000 – 5,000 Agents per month. The demand has come mainly from the rural areas, people who have gone back to their hometown or villages are approaching to work with us.
We are working to reform our few strategies in business by adding many new services and products in our platform in the coming days to enable our widely spread Agents in the country to serve their customers.
This time has turned out optimistic for the fin-tech industry where companies are partnering for its vertical and horizontal growth.
What are your business expansion strategies?
Since BANKIT is specialized in financial services, which include Domestic Money Transfer, Cash withdrawal services (AePS & mATM), Prepaid Cards and other value-added services like- CMS, Prepaid recharges, Utility Bill Payments, Pan card centre, Travel bookings, Safegold, Insurance, Business Loans etc. and reaches out to the customers via Kirana stores and other Agent outlets. We have opened more than 50,000 outlets in 23 states and are spreading the wings rapidly across India. The company has kept a target to add over 1 lakh such outlets in the urban and rural part of the country in this year only under its channel expansion plan. Also, the company is planning to launch a new line of products and services in the coming months.
How has the coronavirus pandemic affected your business? How have you dealt with it? And how do you wish to carry on your business amid this pandemic?
The COVID period has been difficult for everyone across the globe. With businesses getting back to normal and people getting back to work, the sentiment has turned positive for all. We at BANKIT like many others have utilized this time to make our business model resilient and future-ready. Reinventing strategies as per external situations is the key and that has been our philosophy throughout. As mentioned above, BANKIT is an assisted B2B2C company, serving an under-served and non-tech-savvy population of the country. We are in process of adding many new services and products in our platform in coming days to enable our widely spread Agents in the country to serve their customers for all their Banking and Financial needs which are easy to get and hassle-free.
We also have a huge team who are working rigorously every day in the time of need for people. With our numbers of outlets and agents present in rural areas, we have been able to assist people as many don’t understand the process of online transaction, digital payment or so. Our focus is to strengthen our presence where people were struggling with banking facilities because that is our target audience and areas. Our outlets are all spread in rural and semi-urban areas and we are thrilled to see that the tremendous growth in our business in COVID lockdown.
You intend to provide banking facilities to the last mile of the society. How will you ensure that?
With movement restrictions during this time period, with people not being to move out of their homes to visit banks/ATMs in distant locations, we have seen a huge demand for cash services. We have our salespersons, agents, outlets & Kirana stores, who are helping underserved in the time of COVID so that they don’t have to go far to access the banking facilities. However, doorstep cash delivery is another service that has been demanded by customers for their safety. Therefore, the same is being facilitated by our agents as per the requirements. As Agent’s are equipped with technology to do so, BANKIT agents are helping locals while understanding the need of people at the time of emergency. All agents have been giving this service to provide ease to locals in the lockdown period.
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