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Indian Fintech Startup BharatPe Raises $108 Million in Series D Funding

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BharatPe, India’s leading financial services company for merchants, today announced that it has raised US$ 108 Million in Series D equity round, at a valuation of US$ 900 Million.

BharatPe was co-founded by Ashneer Grover and Shashvat Nakrani in 2018 with the vision to make financial inclusion a reality for Indian merchants. BharatPe launched India’s first UPI interoperable QR code, first ZERO MDR payment acceptance service, and first UPI payment backed merchant cash advance service.

The company further shared that it has raised US$ 90 Million in primary fund raise and also ensured secondary exit for its angel investors and employees for a total amount of US$ 18 Million. The round was led by the company’s existing investor Coatue Management. All 7 existing institutional investors participated in the round – Ribbit Capital, Insight Partners, Steadview Capital, Beenext, Amplo and Sequoia Capital. With this round, the company has raised a total of US$ 268 mn in equity and debt till date.

About BharatPe and AI Machine Learning

BharatPe is one of the few globally recognized fintech companies that employs AI ML engineers for research in financial services and micropayment experience management.

Through its BharatX Research Lab, the company intends to set a new benchmark in fintech industry.

Bharat X is the research lab of BharatPe, building the next generation fin-tech platform to ensure financial inclusion of over 60 million small and medium merchants in India. Bharat X will focus on cutting-edge research across the fields of Artificial Intelligence, Human Computer Interaction (HCI), Data Science, Financial Services, Modeling and several other areas.

Speaking on this announcement, Ashneer Grover, Co-Founder and CEO, BharatPe, said “We, at BharatPe, do not celebrate fund raises – it is akin to procuring raw material. We are super excited though to have returned INR 125 crores of capital to angels and all ESOP holders, earning them one of the highest returns on investment. The team is committed to make money for all stakeholders – investors, lenders, borrowers, employees and banks. With the balance sheet well capitalized (more than US$ 200M in bank), we are now going to keep our heads down and deliver US$30B TPV and build a loan book of US$ 700mn with small merchants by March 2023.”

Added Ashneer, “2020 has been an unprecedented year for all. However, we at BharatPe have grown exponentially – our payments business has grown 5x and our lending business has grown 10x in the last 12 months. This growth reiterates the trust that the small merchants and kirana store owners have showed in us. This is just the beginning of our journey and we are committed to build India’s largest B2B financial services company that can serve as one-stop destination for small merchants. For BharatPe, merchants will always be at the core of everything we build.”

Last month, the company announced that it had raised Rs. 249 crores (US$ 35 mn) in debt from all 3 renowned venture debt providers – Alteria Capital, InnoVen Capital and Trifecta Capital – in the largest single raise. BharatPe raised Rs. 50 crores in debt from Trifecta Capital, Rs. 90 crores in debt from Alteria Capital, Rs. 60 crores from InnoVen Capital, and Rs. 49 crores from ICICI Bank.

BharatPe is one of the largest B2B fintech lenders in the country, facilitating over Rs. 200 crores of loans to its merchant partners every month through its NBFC partners. It has been outgrowing the market in the payments space. In November 2020, BharatPe toppled GooglePay to take No. 3 position in the UPI P2M category. Additionally, BharatPe has deployed more than 50,000 PoS machines and enables transactions of more than Rs. 900 crores/ month on our PoS machines. Also, the company has been on an expansion spree and currently has presence in 75 cities in the country.

In 2020, post-Covid, BharatPe also launched India’s only ZERO MDR card acceptance terminals – BharatSwipe. Currently serving over 50 lakh merchants across 35 cities, the company has grown business 30x in 2019 and is a leader in UPI offline transactions, having processed 5 crore+ UPI transactions a month (annualized TPV of US$ 4+ Bn).

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The company has already facilitated disbursement of over Rs. 400 crores to its merchants since launch. BharatPe has raised US$ 142.5 million till date. The company’s list of marquee investors includes Beenext, Sequoia, SteadView Capital, Ribbit Capital, Coatue Management LLC, Insight Partners, and Amplo.n

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