moneysights, a consumer internet start-up in the financial services domain has raised $270K from Blume Ventures & Naveen Tewari, founder of InMobi - World's largest independent Mobile Ad Network. The funding was raised in February 2011 but is being made public only now. Prior to this round, moneysights was seed-funded by Prasad Duvvuri, an angel investor who has held leadership positions in IBM India & Hewlett-Packard.Co-founded by Mukesh Kalra & Santosh Navlani, who were also the first two key employees to join InMobi's founding team, the startup has been building moneysights for 18 months. moneysights.com has undergone rapid iterations based on market and consumer feedback- it began as a B2B, subscription-driven model and transitioned to a free-for-consumer, transaction-oriented model.
The funds are being utilized to grow the team and plug the online transaction platform. moneysights came out of its 4 months long invite-only phase 20 days ago. It has nurtured a set of passionate users who use it regularly to manage their equity market investments to begin with.
What is moneysights building & what's its secret sauce?
moneysights intends to be a technology-led low-cost online distributor of financial products (starting with Mutual Funds). A visit to moneysights will allow the user to experience some very smart innovations - one will observe that moneysights is differentiated by its relentless focus on simplifying every step of the buying process for investors, even first-timers.
Prior to purchase of a financial asset, the stumbling block for investors is to identify the product that is best suited to one's need and risk profile, since there are hundreds of choices today in the market. moneysights help users solve this problem through their smart product recommendation & discovery engine. The recommendation engine creates a portfolio of high performing Mutual Funds that minimizes investment risk & at the same time is well diversified across sectors, market capitalization, etc. All of this is achieved by customizing the selection to your risk profile and is absolutely free - a win-win proposition for the all investors - from first-timers to market veterans.
During the purchase of a financial product, which is the imminent next phase in the moneysights journey, customers will see a simpler, faster and reliable buying experience. Santosh and Mukesh say that all market surveys, from both providers of these options and investors, suggest that the current buying experience (largely offline) is extremely cumbersome, expensive & full of transaction frictions. The launch of this module is expected in July 2011.
Post-purchase, one of the biggest problems is clear visibility into ones investments. moneysights helps users track all their investments at one place and give them actionable insights by intelligently combining users' behaviour and product performance data from the markets. The user experience is what will eventually set moneysights apart.
Online delivery as a channel of distribution is yet at its early stages in India - only 5% of the Mutual Funds are bought over the Internet. However, the recent lowering of sales-commissions have put the current high-cost offline distrubution channel at a big disadvantage. At the same time, consumers have started rapidly adopting the Internet for researching financial products. This has led to an aggressive push from the industry side to develop & support online Mutual Fund transaction platforms & keep transaction costs low. According to a KPMG report, assets under managemnet of Mutual Fund companies are slated to grow to $430 Bn by 2015 which translates into a distribution market size of $2.25 Bn, and Mutual Funds is just the first of the markets that moneysights.com is making simpler for every Indian investor.