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Former Goldman execs’ fintech startup NIRA pulls in fresh funding
Photo Credit: VCCircle

Shuhari Tech Ventures Pvt. Ltd, which operates the blue- and grey-collar worker-focussed financial technology startup NIRA, has raised $1 million (Rs 7.41 crore at current exchange rates) in a fundraising round.

In a statement, Bengaluru-based NIRA said it has raised this capital from existing angel investors in the company. It did not disclose their identities.

Per VCCEdge, the data research arm of Mosaic Digital, investors in NIRA include 10,000 Startups and global investment platform and accelerator Techstars.

The fresh infusion takes the total capital raised by the startup to a little over $4 million. It also comes after the company raised $2.1 million (around Rs 15.88 crore) as part of its pre-Series A round in April.

NIRA was set up in 2017 by Rohit Sen and Nupur Gupta, both of whom worked at Goldman Sachs prior to setting up the fintech firm. The company says it offers access to credit to working class citizens, with loans of up to Rs 1 lakh for up to one year.

It will use the capital it has raised to grow its operations, enhance its technological infrastructure and scale lending volumes.

“The credit portfolio and the team have performed excellently during Covid-19, so now we want to build on this strong foundation and expand the scale of our business. We have had robust growth in the last few months and are already at 400% of our pre-Covid-19 volumes,” Sen said.

NIRA also claims that only 2% of its loans were placed in moratorium during the nationwide lockdown caused by Covid-19, and that collection rates for the last two months have exceeded 97%.

Deals in the fintech space

There has been significant movement in the fintech space this year despite the onset of the pandemic.

Earlier this week, True Balance raised $28 million (about Rs 208 crore) in a Series D round of funding from investors including SoftBank Ventures Asia and South Korea-based investment firms Naver, BonAngels, Daesung Private Equity and Shinhan Capital.

Also this month, the small and medium enterprises-focussed payments services company Instamojo raised funding from investors including the venture arm of Japan’s Gunosy and Base, another Japanese investors.

Another SME-focussed fintech lender, FlexiLoans.com, raised funding in October through an equity and debt mix from investors including the family office of Falguni Nayar and husband Sanjay Nayar.

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