Former Infosys top exec launches lending start-up
A former Infosys senior exec and venture capitalist has unveiled his new India-based lending start-up, Billionloans.
V Balakrishnan, formerly in charge of BPO, Finacle and India business units at Infosys, has founded the firm with Rangan Varadan. The latter is also CEO of Indian peer-to peer microcredit firm MicroGraam – and Balakrishnan is an independent director of that company.
Billionloans acts as a “facilitator between the lender and borrower for a loan transaction”, according to its site. It will help with loans up to IND 2 million ($30,000) and says it “removes the need for a bank by enabling people to lend money directly to other people”.
Such lending firms are becoming more common, as entrepreneurs or companies look to provide services to rural India and the underbanked.
At present, details about Billionloans’ tech are vague. Balakrishnan says it has integrated lots of technologies, which sounds wonderful but not really that helpful. Banking Technology has contacted the firm for more details.
In terms of funding, Balakrishnan says Billionloans is planning to close the first round worth nearly $1 million from an unnamed external investor in the next two weeks.
It has also applied for a non-banking financial company (NBFC) licence. This is for firms in India registered under the Companies Act of 1956 that are engaged in the business of loans and advances.
Billionloans will begin its operations from the southern states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.
Balakrishnan is a prolific venture capitalist and sits as an independent director on seven firms (including MicroGraam) in the US and India.