StanChart to set up digital SME platform in India
Standard Chartered’s SC Ventures unit will be launching an open platform for SMEs in India to tap into this highly popular market.
According to the bank, the nation’s SME sector contributes approximately 30% of GDP and 45% of exports.
It will use various data sources and integrate with digital business solution providers. These solutions will include access to business loans, invoice/supply chain financing, logistics, and commercial insurance. The platform will be supported by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning.
The technology company has been established in Bengaluru. Nitin Mittal has been appointed as its CEO.
Zarin Daruwala, CEO of Standard Chartered, India, says: “This platform addresses a wide range of SME needs through a completely different model which simplifies the SME growth experience, while putting control at their fingertips.”
Alex Manson, global head of SC Ventures, adds: “Rewiring the DNA in banking is all about the business model. This venture lays the foundation for an open platform that will thrive on partnerships, leverage technology and data, and support communities of aspiring SMEs.”
The beta testing has been completed and the platform will do its first transactions in Q2 2019.
At the time of launch, for financing it intends to partner with Standard Chartered Investments and Loans Ltd (SCILL), a non-banking financial company.
The platform will be available to clients in India in the second half of 2019.
Earlier this month, rival bank DBS stepped up its interest in India with the unveiling of its locally incorporated wholly owned subsidiary, DBS Bank India Limited (DBIL).
It’s not new to the country as DBS has been present in India for 25 years. However, with DBIL, DBS is looking for more growth and to build greater scale in India through a “phygital” model to target large corporates, SMEs and individual customers.