Mobile tech and data science firm, InVenture, which also provides micro-loans straight to a user’s wallet in African countries, has raised $10 million in a Series A round of funding from venture capital firm Data Collective and participation from India Internet Fund (IIF).
Other investors who participated in the round of funding include, Chris Sacca’sLowercase Capital, Facebook co-founder and independent investor Chris Hughes, Palantir and Paypal co-founder Nathan Gettings, former Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit, former Thomson Reuters CEO Tom Glocer, Collaborative Fund, and Female Founders Fund.
The company says it will use the funds to expand to other territories in sub-Saharan Africa nations and Asia. Founded in 2012 by Shivani Siroya, Inventure is based in Santa Monica-with presence in New York and Nairobi. The firm raised its seed and angel investments from the likes of Google Ventures and MESA+.
InVenture claims that it collects more than 10,000 data points per user to create a living credit score and approve customers for a line of credit. The company then disburses the loan directly to the user’s mobile money account. InVenture says that the entire process takes less than five minutes.
RBI regulation in India on micro lending
InVenture does not mention which countries in Asia it plans to expand. If it does to plan to expand to India, the Reserve Bank of India regulations require loan funds sent to non-government microfinance institutions to remain in the country for at least three years. InVenture will probably will have to partner with a local micro-lending firm to hold on to loan funds for the minimum 3-year term before sending repayments back to lenders. That is, once lenders have loaned the amount, even if borrowers have repaid, the lenders’ money will be re-cycled and used to loan another project by the field partners. Which also means that the lenders’ money or credit will be locked down for a period of three years.