Times Internet’s ETMoney has entered into the lending space with the launch of a new service called CreditLine on its platform, in partnership with RBL Bank.

ETMoney is a personal expense management app which allows users to invest in mutual funds, gold deposits, liquid funds etc, buy insurance, manage expenses and more. The company claims that the app has 4 million users so far and said that it has grown 20x in the last 12 months.

How it works: Users need to download the app, and then share a few basic details to set up a credit limit. Existing ETMoney users have a pre-approved credit limit.  Users can instantly get a credit between Rs 3,000 to Rs 5 lakh and transfer the same in their bank accounts. The company said that users can repay on their terms from few days to few months, and once repaid, the limit will automatically replenish. The interest is charged only on the used amount from the credit limit. Every user who takes credit via CreditLine gets a plastic card for online and offline purchases. For users with no credit score or CIBIL score, the company said it uses machine learning to general a credit score and limit for the user. The technology collects data such user’s SMS which includes points like bill history, to generate credit line limit for a particular user.

 

Competition

Paytm is reportedly trying to enter the lending space and is seeking a licence from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to become a peer-to-peer lending platform. Paytm Money, the payments company’s wealth management arm is set to begin operations as soon as the company receives approval from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). It was reported that One97 Communications, Paytm’s parent company, will invest $10 million upfront in the newly created wealth management arm.

Mobikwik too is working on the launch of a lending product that will offer instant credit to customers directly from its app.  Other players in this segment are like Capital Float, NeoGrowth, Paytm-backed CreditMate, CASHe, LendingKart, MoneyTap, EasySalry, Faircent, LoanMeet amongst others. Ecommerce players are too eyeing this place, Flipkart already is in process of tapping fintech space. Meanwhile,  Amazon recently invested $22 million (Rs 144 crore) in a lending company Capital Float. Note that this was Amazon’s third investment in the financial technology space in India. In 2015, Amazon had earlier invested in BankBazaar and Qwikcilver Solutions in 2015.

Times group and Fintech

The Times Group is tapping fintech in a big way. Bennett, Coleman & Co Limited (BCCL), the publisher of the Times Of India and the parent of Times Internet, acquired an undisclosed stake in online loan company FinREQ. Besides ETMoney,  it has ETinsure.com, an online insurance platform which offers specialised insurance like car and two-wheeler insurances. The group also invested $1.5 million in P2P lending platform Faircent in an ad-for-equity deal.