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[The F Word] Founded by ex-Flipkart employees, Groww raises $1.6M in pre-Series A funding

Tarush Bhalla
9th Jul 2018
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Data science-based mutual fund investing platform Groww will use the $1.6 million to strengthen technology and build scalable growth channels.

Bengaluru-based investment platform Groww on Monday announced that it had raised around $1.6 million as part of its pre-Series A funding from Insignia Ventures Partners, Lightbridge Partners, Kairos and others. Existing investors Mukesh Bansal and Ankit Nagori also participated in this round.

According to the company, Groww will use the funds to strengthen technology and build scalable growth channels. The company is also looking to launch more financial products and value-added services.

Started by four ex-Flipkart employees - Lalit Keshre, Harsh Jain, Neeraj Singh, and Ishan Bansal - in April 2017, Groww offers direct access to mutual funds, and a seamless and transparent approach to investing via a mobile app and web platform.

Groww Co-founders (L to R): Ishan Bansal, Lalit Keshre, Neeraj Singh, and Harsh Jain

On the fund raise, Lalit Keshre, Co-founder and CEO, said, “We challenge ourselves every day with how to keep Groww simple for new investors, while adding more products and functionalities. Our long-term goal is to make anything related to finance extremely simple and transparent for users while providing them the best user experience.”

Explaining the reason behind the investment, Tan Yinglan, Founding Managing Partner, Insignia Ventures Partners, said, “Groww is the right idea, at the right time, to enable and empower a new generation of investors in India to build their financial future at a younger age, and we're excited to be on the ground floor of this sea change.The Groww team is doing a great job building a trusted relationship with customers with its simple and convenient product offering. Over time, it’s not hard to imagine that Groww will layer on more products and services to become the Amazon of financial services.”

In a previous conversation with YourStory, the startup claimed to have close to 200,000 unique visitors on its platform around February. From April to December last year, the company claimed to have processed close to 1,00,000 transactions on its platform.

The company is also backed by American seed accelerator, YCombinator.

Growing investor attention

When It comes to the Indian financial technology ecosystem, wealth management is increasingly attracting investor attention, after lending.

Just last month, Sqrrl and Nivesh.com raised around $1 million and Rs 3 crore respectively in funding. Last year, brokerage house Zerodha launched its direct mutual fund platform Coin and has close to Rs 1,100 crore in assets under management at present. In May, direct mutual fund platform Orowealth announced that they had raised $1.6 million in Series A funding in a round led by Powerhouse Ventures.

But the penetration of this space isn’t restricted to smaller platforms. Payment behemoth Paytm also announced its mutual fund marketplace in January this year. Still at the pilot stage, the company is expected to launch the trading platform in the next two months.

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