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MobiKwik sets sights on becoming India’s newest unicorn, looks at closing fresh funding round

Team YS
9th Feb 2017
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On Wednesday, the news came out that mobile payments company MobiKwik was looking at a fresh round of funding from investors (by the next month), as it pushes to offer new financial services on its platform.

Upasana Taku and Bipin Preet (Co-founders of MobikWik
Upasana Taku and Bipin Preet (Co-founders of MobiKwik)

Further, according to Bipin Preet Singh, Co-founder and CEO of MobiKwik, this round of fundraise will give the company a valuation of $1 billion, making MobiKwik the newest unicorn on the block. However, he declined to state the percentage of equity the company might be ready to sell for the transaction.

Claiming to have a network of close to 45 million users and 1.4 million merchant base across the country, the company has raised more than $126 million in funding so far. The last one was reported to be a $40 million funding round from South African transaction channel provider, Net1.

MobiKwik, at present, seems to have a strong lineup of investors including names such as Sequoia Capital, Taiwan-based semi-conductor giant MediaTek, Japan’s GMO Venture Partners, and hedge fund Tree Line Asia.

While speaking to Reuters, Bipin said:

“We should be touching a billion (dollars) soon ... in the next one or two months.”

He further added,

“Some of the things that are going to happen over the next two to three months will actually lead to MobiKwik being the default payments partner for a lot of people and they already see us as a natural ally.”

Moreover, while not divulging any more information about the deal, Bipin claimed that the company is likely to break even by the middle of 2018. He said,

“I see a future where within the app you can avail yourself of many different financial services in addition to making payments. Many of those will be far more profitable compared to payments alone.”

Just last week, it was reported that MobiKwik’s arch rival Paytm was close to raising $180–200 million (around Rs 1,210–1,350 crore) in an investment round led by Chinese internet giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. for its e-commerce operations.

As Paytm folds its wallet business into payments banks (announced December last year), and gets ready to launch their payment bank, it’s not much of a secret that the bank will make a lion share of its revenues through cross-selling of other financial services on its platform.

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