Fintech payments startup Slice raised $22.6 million or Rs 165 crore in debt funding from 18 financial institutions in the last financial year. The investors include Northern Arc Capital, Vivriti Capital, AU Small Finance Bank, Incred Financial Services among others.
In a statement, Slice said that around Rs 126 crore in the debt funding was raised during the last five months of the previous financial year. “Last year was volatile, which makes it even more empowering for us to have such strong financial institutions show solidarity with our vision. The number of institutions investing in us has grown significantly in FY21 alone, a validation of our strategy of keeping the lowest NPAs in the industry,” said Rajan Bajaj, founder and chief executive officer, Slice in a statement. “Our priority right now is to support the country in every way possible as we all collectively fight the second wave,” he added.
Slice, formerly known as SlicePay – was set up in 2016 by Bajaj and is backed by venture capital firms like Gunosy Capital, Das Capital, Finup, Blume Ventures India, Sachin Bansal’s Navi and angel investors such as Kunal Shah of CRED. In June last year, it raised $6 million in a pre-Series B funding round, followed by a $2.9 million raise in September and a $1.4 million raise in October.
The fintech startup is trying to change how customers use credit cards and short-term credit. Through the slice card, which has a 16 digit unique number with a CVV code just like a normal card, customers can avail of low or no-cost EMIs, offers, and discounts across more than 1,000 merchants. By targeting millennials, Slice aims to make credit access cheaper and quicker than traditional banks that offer credit cards accompanies by high fees and inflexible payment options. Further, since banks charge high fees and interest rates in case of cash withdrawals through credit cards, slice offers a lower fee for cash transactions through the slice card.
Slice has over 300,000 members, with an additional 900,000 members on a waiting list. It plans to grow its user base to 1 million in the coming 12 months, it said in the statement. “Despite the pandemic, the company grew by 125% in 2020 and has recorded a 40-50% increase in average customer spends. The company also plans to double its employee strength in 2021 with a major focus on tech, product and design,” it added. The company processed over $250 million in transaction volumes and plans to achieve a gross-transaction-volume run rate of $1 billion by the end of the current financial year.
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