Omidyar Network, others back fintech startup Kaleidofin with seed money

By Shweta Sharma

  • 09 Apr 2018
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Chennai-based fintech company Kaleidofin has raised $2.8 million (Rs 18 crore) in a seed round led by Omidyar Network, the company said.

The round also saw the participation of Blume Ventures and Israeli serial entrepreneur and inventor, Shlomo Ben-Haim. This is Ben-Haim’s first investment in India.

The capital will be used to expand Kaleidofin’s network of strategic partners and accelerate its pan-India customer acquisition plans, besides enabling deep investments in technology and analytics. The company seeks to grow its network of agents, banking correspondents, cooperatives, self-help groups and micro-finance institutions to scale up its financial solutions offerings to the undeserved.

Hindu Group CEO and managing director Rajiv C Lochan has also joined Kaleidofin’s board as an independent director.

Founded in 2017 by former IFMR Holdings CEO Sucharita Mukherjee and Puneet Gupta, the former CFO at IFMR Holdings, Kaleidofin provides intuitive and tailored financial solutions to the informal sector. It has entered into strategic partnerships with many banks, non-banking financial companies and micro-finance institutions working in the space.

The company has tie-ups with SEWA Bank, Sonata Microfinance, ICICI Pru MF, UTI, Aditya Birla, SBI, ICICI Pru Life and Bharti Axa. It uses machine learning and intelligent algorithms to match solutions to customers’ goals.

“We believe that everyone deserves and requires access to financial solutions that are intuitive and easy to use, flexible and personalised to real goals. This can make financial progress and financial freedom possible for everyone. Kaleidofin aims to be the financial advisor to potentially 600 million-plus informal sector customers, all delivered in a simple, easy to use mobile app,” said Mukherjee.

In March, Omidyar Network, the Silicon Valley-based investing firm started by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar, had led a Series A investment in customer engagement startup, ZineOne Inc.

“Even though India has made strides in improving access to the formal financial system, uptake of services and products by Indian consumers has been slow, because they find that traditional banking or insurance is not relevant to their life’s context,” said Smita Aggarwal, director, investments, Omidyar Network.

“We are excited that Kaleidofin uses state-of-the-art technologies to understand people’s unique needs and offer bundled solutions to mass market consumers to help improve their financial lives,” Aggarwal, who joined Kaleidofin’s board as part of the transaction, added.

Fintech deals

Last month, Bengaluru-based fintech startup Smart Coin had raised $2 million in a pre-Series A funding round led by an undisclosed Chinese venture capital firm.

Fintech startup Creditas Solutions Pvt. Ltd had also raised an undisclosed amount in a pre-Series A funding round led by equity crowdfunding platform 1Crowd.

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