Five-month-old fintech startup Cashcow, which provides banking services and products to a customer at his doorstep, has expanded its operations to seven cities including Delhi, Kolkata, Pune, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Chennai.
“For entrepreneurs, Cashcow is a business or entity which provides money and profit. And we want to be that for our partners,” says Gaurav Goyal, explaining the reason behind the name.
Cashcow, however, is not Gaurav’s first venture.
In 2012, the IIT Delhi graduate started NextGenQuant, developing algorithm trading strategies for various asset classes for Indian HNIs. However, certain changes in government policies made him look towards internet-based businesses.
In between, he also tried his hand at entrepreneurship with the real estate startup, homescart.com.
Joining fintech company Rubique as a chief product officer in 2016 introduced him to Manish Aggarwal, his future co-founder, who was leaving the startup at that point.
Manish had worked as the national head for Bharti Airtel as well as head of sales for Standard Chartered Bank.
The duo continued to exchange ideas and eventually started up in January 2017. And by March they had rolled out their first product.
The co-founding team also includes Sarfraz Nawaz who handles operations for the team as well as Mustufa, a close friend of Manish, who is in charge of branding and marketing.
Milking the cash cow
According to the founders, Cashcow is a platform providing banking services and products to a customer at his doorstep. Gaurav explains,
“If you are looking for a banking product, you end up talking to multiple banks and get confused. Hence, we want to solve this problem by providing on-ground advisors.”
Just like booking a cab from an app, consumers can book certified advisors in their locality. The advisor then comes to the consumer’s doorstep to advise him
But the reference doesn’t stop there. Individuals can also enroll themselves as advisors through the app and become distribution points or lead generators for the firm.
However, the founders claim that only certified advisors (of particular domains) are allowed to advise the clients. Gaurav adds,
“The lead generates from a normal Cashcow agent. Once it is qualified as genuine, the lead gets transferred to a certified advisor on the platform.”
Also, advisors certified in a certain domain will provide consultancy services only about those products. For example, an advisor certified for loans will only advise about lending, with the certification given by Cashcow, by testing their product knowledge.
The founders aim to make the process more efficient by inducting and certifying advisors for specific products rather than tying them to a certain domain.
But at a time, when there exist models like Kuvera and ProsperX which are making the concept of wealth management completely digital, why is Cashcow betting on the offline model?
Gaurav claims that the platform is not completely offline.
When advisors meet a client, they feed the individuals details and parameters, with Cashcow’s algorithms underwriting and qualifying their applications with the partner banks.
After qualification, the algorithm suggests the best products to the customer.
The business metrics
In just five months of operation, the startup has expanded to seven cities including Delhi, Kolkata, Pune, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Chennai.
With 40 members in the team, the company is still in discussions to enter the Bengaluru market.
Further, Cashcow operates with a network of more than 300 field agents, of which 20 percent are certified advisors by the startup.
At present, the platform offers home loans, personal loans, business loans, loans against property, balance transfers or credit cards, partnering with more than 50 banks.
The company is not focusing on investment products like insurances and mutual funds presently. However, it is looking to enter newer lending segments including gold and motor loans.
Cashcow also claims to have built a loan book of almost 80 crore over the course of five months of operations.
Gaurav claims that average ticket size for personal loans is Rs 4 lakh, Rs 70 lakh for home loans or loans against property and Rs 1 crore for business loans.
Cashcow gets its revenues through commissions on loans deployed. It can rake as much as 3 to 4 percent for personal loan or business loans, and 1 to 1.5 percent for home loans or loans against property.
Advisors on the platform can get 0.75 percent for generating leads for business and personal loans, 0.3 percent of commissions on home loans. On fulfilling or successfully closing a lead, an advisor can make 1.5 percent of the total loan amount as commission for personal or business loans and 0.55 percent for home loans.
Bootstrapped, the founders have put in 1 crore of capital to start the business.
In terms of number of transactions, the firm has successfully disbursed more than 1,000 credit cards and 175 loans, making Rs 3,000 on an average for deploying a card.
Looking at the future, Cashcow’s endeavors revolve around getting more advisors and enriching their certification across all domains. They are taking help of banking and subject matter experts to enrich their content.
The founders are positive to reach more than 2,000 advisors on ground and be present in 10 cities (from 7) by the end of December, this year. They are also planning to build a loan book size of Rs 500 crore by the end of this fiscal year.
The next fiscal will also see the firm experimenting with wealth management products including insurances and mutual funds.
At a time when loan marketplaces and lead generation platforms like BankBazaar, as well as NBFCs like InCred are trying to take the entire distribution model online, there is Cashcow which is laying its offline framework actively.
This can be fairly useful considering big ticket loans like home and business loans do require offline intervention and customer signatures on documents. And nothing works better than physical presence for the Indian customer to give them the trust of a certain platform.
But one cannot dismiss, that offline brings its own set of challenges affecting mass scale, when compared to the rapidness of online platforms.
Online or Offline, one can surely agree to what Gaurav claims, that ‘eventually this space of banking products such as loans, insurances and mutual funds will be organised like the taxi or cab aggregator space.”