Eko, India’s domestic remittance, has forayed into the lending ecosystem by creating the ‘first time credit’ module for ambitious sellers. What started as a journey to revolutionize money transfer in India has swiftly progressed to empowering millions of micro & small-sized businesses across the country to bolster their digital footprint for a brighter tomorrow.
The advancements in technology are pushing companies to ‘go digital’ for continued survival in the market. However, the lack of funding and solid tech-driven foundation restrict MSMEs to adopt the same route. Eko strives to help them overcome such challenges by collaborating with NBFCs and P2P lending organizations. By dispensing close to $1bn of loans with flexible repayments infrastructure, the company wants to provide affordable capital and AI-backed services to MSMEs, allowing them to instill digital transformation within their operations.
The fintech platform uses the ‘micro-credit approach’ in its services and designs them to fulfill the same. Its daily repayment infrastructure capability allows sellers to repay loans daily in part or full. They can use this credit to boost their business and serve more customers using Eko’s platform or outside of it. Their proprietary underwriting model based on transactions done on Eko’s platform, another notable feature, offers credit to sellers and customers who lack a CIBIL score and are not a part of the formal credit system. The model also uses demographic, and engagement data of the sellers to drive efficient results.
Speaking on the noble announcement, Mr Abhishek Sinha, Co-Founder, Eko, said, “A World Bank study estimates a $380bn financing gap for small & medium businesses in India. Given their role in the country’s development, something needs to be done to empower MSMEs to achieve their true potential. By leveraging top-notch technology and a sturdy infrastructure, we aim to become a one-stop platform for small-businesses that welcomes them into the world of credit, allowing them to drive their operations digitally and bolster their balance sheets”.
Eko’s mission to unlock growth in the partner ecosystem for MSMEs and take them at the helm of digital operations has attracted a lot of attention in the past. The company secured two significant investments of $ 5.5 M in 2011 & $ 1.5 M in 2017 from Creation Investments, which were utilized to strengthen its product development, R&D, and technological framework. With the organization’s brains working tirelessly to benefit MSMEs, the platform recently made a turnover of INR 200 Cr in FY 20 and hosts a happy client base of 35 million end customers and 2,50,000 merchants. Owing to automated processes and deep-tech analytics driving its risk underwriting models, the platform is currently seeing over 50K sellers sign-ups each month, eyeing a target of 1 million sellers and a loan book of US$ 1B in the next 3-5 years.
Eko is strengthening its team with more hirings in the data science, product and engineering teams, corroborated by technology investments to do multiple lender-agnostic and lender-specific integrations.