ZestMoney goes zestier with $13.4m funding
Bengaluru-based digital lending start-up ZestMoney has raised $13.4 million in a Series A funding round led by mobile phone manufacturer Xiaomi.
Existing investors PayU, Ribbit Capital and Omidyar Network also participated in the round. PayU led the Series A round of $6.5 million in February 2017.
ZestMoney is part of Camden Town Technologies and has raised $22 million so far. It says it receives up to 300,000 loan applications monthly.
The firm will enhance its technology and data science capabilities, as well as expand the reach of its ZestMoney Affordability Product.
The start-up was founded by Lizzie Chapman, a former Goldman Sachs executive; Priya Sharma (CFO and COO), a former Merrill Lynch associate; and software engineer Ashish Anantharaman (CTO).
The three co-founders were previously at Wonga, a UK-based loan company which is close to shutting its doors.
ZestMoney provides loans to online shoppers, that they can return in equated monthly instalments (EMI) without the need of a credit card.
The firm says it will be looking into travel and healthcare as it expands its credit product line.
ZestMoney and Xiaomi co-launched Mi Finance last year, which sets financing plans to purchase Xiaomi products via a cardless EMI. Other partners are Amazon, Flipkart, Zefo, and ed-tech firm UpGrad.
ZestMoney recently acquired platform PhotographAI to enhance its visual artificial intelligence (AI) and optical character recognition.