[Funding alert] App-based lender Branch raises $170M just a month after entering India

Branch International will be using the fresh capital to fuel expansion in India and Latin America, and also strengthen its offering in Africa.

San Francisco-based digital-lending startup Branch International, which entered the Indian market just last month, has raised $170 million in a recent Series C round, the company announced on Tuesday.

The round was led by Foundation Capital and Visa, along with participation from existing investors Andreessen Horowitz, Trinity Ventures, Formation 8, IFC, CreditEase, and Victory Park as well as new investors like Greenspring, Foxhaven, and B Capital.

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The app-based lender, which provides unsecured micro-loans, will be using the fresh capital to fuel expansion in India and Latin America. In addition, Branch International will also be looking to strengthen its financial offering in Africa, where it is the most downloaded app.

Charishma Chotalia, General Manager of Branch India, said,

“As we start to expand our product portfolio, we see India becoming a crucial market for them. The current series of funding will help us build our India operations to deliver simple, fast and reliable credit for our consumers.”

In an earlier interview with YourStory, Chotalia said that the company received 120,000 loan applications from Maharashtra, Gujarat, UP, and Bihar in India. She added, the average ticket size of loans on the platform is between Rs 500 to 50,000. The tenure to repay loans ranges from 28 days to several months.

The US-based company also announced its partnership with Visa to bring financial access to individuals new to credit.  

“Our previous rounds of funding helped us expand our services to new countries and with the current funding and partnership with Visa, we expect to enable Branch customers to access cash from any ATM around the world,” explained Matthew Flannery, CEO and Co-founder of Branch.

The average interest rate on branch is between 9-24 percent in India.

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