Working towards providing ‘goal’ based financial solutions to the underbanked population of India, Kaleidofin, a tech based neobank, offers solutions that is a combination of savings, investment, credit and, in some cases, insurance.
With over 50,000 active customers spread across 10 states of India, Kaleidofin works in a partnership model with microfinance institutions, NGOs, corporates and gig-platforms to provide the last mile touch point with customers. With INR 36 crore in Series A funding led by Oikocredit. Flourish, Omidyar Network, Bharat Inclusion Fund and Blume Ventures, the startup aims to provide relevant financial services to the 600 million underbanked population of India.
Manish Joshi from NewsBarons connects with Puneet Gupta, Co-founder of Kaleidofin Private Limited who informs ‘Majority of our customers save towards child’s education, marriage and in some cases expanding their businesses’.
NB: Tell us about your services?
Puneet: Kaleidofin solution is a combination of saving, investment, insurance and credit. However, for a customer, it is single point financial savings and planning product.
Our customer interaction starts by determining a customer’s financial goal, objective of saving as well as a quantum. Kaleidofin app creates a financial health persona of a customer by using a combination of personal information collected about the customer such as income, family structure and secondary information available about the region such as vulnerability in the region due to natural calamities. Kaleidofin App suggests the relevant solution for the customer.
The money is invested directly from the customer’s individual account. Credit and insurance also get intuitively plugged in at the right moment in a customer’s life journey with the sole aim of ensuring that each customer reaches his/her chosen goal without any cognitive load of choosing the right financial product for each and every life-stage of the customer.
A customer can start saving as little as INR 500. At present our average saving amount is over INR 900.
– Raised INR 36 crore in Series A funding
– Over 50,000 active customers
– Reached $1 million in customer savings
– 95% of customer base from Tier II & III locations
– MFI partnerships with Cashpor, Sonata and Madura
– Corporate partnership with Printo, Microlabs, Practo and Better Place
NB: What is the profile of your customer base?
Puneet: Indian states are diverse not just in their culture behaviour but also in the overall economic behaviour. In the first two years of our operation, our focus was on learning about these diversities and adopting our solutions towards them. We chose to work in states that offered us different challenges, for e.g. while TamilNadu has better education while a large segment of customers from Bihar have never used a formal savings product. Learnings from each state were used to customise our solutions and operations as well as modify our agent training and customer communications.
95% of our customers are from the Tier II and below towns. A very large number of them are daily wage earners, have variable pay or have small informal businesses such as a tailoring shop.
NB: How do acquire customers, especially, in Tier II & III locations?
Puneet: We understood the profile of our target audience and were aware that not all of our customers will have access to smart phones or be comfortable making financial transaction on phones. We, therefore, built partnership models with entities such as MFIs, corporates and aggregator platforms, who have existing ‘trust’ based relationship with the end consumers. The representatives from these entities help us provide the last mile connectivity with the customers.
Each of our representatives carry the Kaleidofin app on their mobile devices to onboard and later interact with the customer. Kaleidofin team has an extensive training program to enable the agents/ representatives to understand the Kaleidofin solutions and processes.
NB: What happens if the customer is not able to fulfil his monthly commitment?
Puneet: All our solutions have been designed to accommodate income vulnerability of our customers. There is no penalty or late fees if a customer misses his/her monthly commitments, giving the customer the option to skip savings for any monthly contribution.
Indian states are diverse not just in their culture behaviour but also in the overall economic behaviour – Puneet Gupta.
NB: Tell us about your partner agencies?
Puneet: We have partnered with some large MFIs such as Samasta, SVCL, Cashpor, Sonata, SEWA Bank and Madura amongst others who provide us the reach to the deepest parts of India. At the same time, corporates such as Printo, Microlabs, Practo, Satin Creditcare, Betterplace and the likes help us solve financial challenges of the underserved community in urban locations.
NB: You have recently raised INR 36 crore in series A funding? How do you plan to utilize the funds?
Puneet: Today, we are present in 10 states and are ready for a fast pace expansion across India. The funds will primarily be used for our expansion of teams and further investment in technology to support the growth and solving for the endemic and exciting challenges a diverse Indian ecosystem comes with.