• Kae Capital led the financing round of a fintech start-up bold finance.
  • The round also saw participation from existing investor Bold Finance Deer antler Indiawith a handful of angel investors.
  • Bold Finance has already opened more than 50 branches in just seven months in the suburbs of Mumbai.

Fintech start-up Bold Finance announced on Friday that it had raised $1.5 million in a funding round led by Kae Capital. The round also saw participation from existing Bold Finance investor Antler India, as well as angel investors Nitin Gupta (Uni Cards), Ishpreet Gandhi (Stride Ventures), Shashikant Dola (McKinsey & Company), Tushar Mehndiratta (Avail Finance), Vadiraj Kulkarni (CEO, ITC PSPD) and others.

Founded by two ITI Roorkee alumni, Nikhil Jain and Durgesh Suthar, Bold Finance has a vision to improve the availability of credit for users in the low and middle income segments of Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities. Its first credit product is gold loans.

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Currently, 65% of the $130 billion gold loan market is unorganized, causing customers to suffer due to high interest rates, lack of documentation and lack of transparency, a said the company. Bold Finance has adopted a business model of placing itself between banks, jewelers and customers by creating a technology platform that allows jewelers to operate as branches of Bold Finance.

The two-pronged benefits of this platform – jewelers work with multiple banks to lend in a regulated manner and grow their business sustainably, while customers benefit from low interest rates, easy access to capital, transparency and convenient repayments through the mobile app, the company said.

“The gold loan is mainly a distress loan or a working capital loan, which customers urgently need. In such a situation, ease of access in hyper-local neighborhoods, longer opening hours and low interest rates are paramount for customers,” said Jain, co-founder of Bold Finance.

Compared to its peers, Bold Finance also has significantly lower operating costs. In fact, the cost and time required to start a new branch is 60 times lower than its competitors. Due to its low operating costs and unique business model, Bold Finance opened more than 50 branches in suburban Mumbai in just 7 months, he said.

Sunitha Viswanathan, Partner at Kae Capital, said, “We believe Bold’s approach of partnering with jewelers breaks the barrier of trust with the consumer and allows them to deepen the relationship. We are excited to partner with Bold as they build a customer-centric fintech platform for Bharat.

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