Startup news and updates: daily roundup (September 8, 2022)

YourStory presents daily news roundups from the Indian startup ecosystem and beyond. Here's the roundup for Thursday, September 8, 2022.
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Fullerton India appoints Deepak Patkar as CEO of home finance unit

Fullerton India Credit Company Ltd (FICCL), a leading NBFC in India, elevated Deepak Patkar as Chief Executive Officer of Fullerton India Home Finance Co Ltd (‘Grihashakti’, ‘FIHFC’).

In his last role as Chief Risk Officer for FICCL, Deepak established a strong balanced culture of business enablement with prudent risk measures, strongly backed by analytics, the company said. He comes with extensive experience in business development, enterprise risk management, credit policy design, and operational and fraud risk management.

“Deepak has played a crucial role in driving transformational changes in various segments of the company in his earlier assignments. He brings remarkable value to Grihashakti, with more than 20 years of experience in the BFSI sector,” Shantanu Mitra, Chairman and Non-Executive Director, Grihashakti said in a media release. “We are confident that his impactful leadership will take the company to greater heights and expand our market coverage, with a continued focus on affordable housing finance for our customers.”

Dhananjay Tiwari now takes over from Deepak as CRO for FICCL, which has established a pan India presence—across 600 towns and 60,000+ villages through 633 branches and 12,500 employees, offering lending products to underserved retail and MSME borrowers.

HDFC Bank announces MoU with Institute of Economic Growth

HDFC Bank announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Institute of Economic Growth (IEG), to fund a chair to carry out independent research. It would be known as ‘HDFC Bank Chair of Banking and Finance’.

“HDFC Bank Chair” will carry out research in crucial and emerging aspects of banking and finance and hold periodic seminars for exchanging its findings and insights. It will benefit the banking and financial services industry and regulators, as also build a body of knowledge in this vital area. The bank will support IEG for this Chair for over five years with funding support of Rs 6.75 crore, with effect from September 1, 2022, it said in a media release.

Latest trends in the regulation, financing of agriculture and MSME sectors, innovation in capital markets, and economic drivers of financial inclusion and digital transformation within financial services are some of the areas of emphasis for this centre, HDFC Bank said.

Atlassian Office in Bengaluru.

Atlassian to hire over 1,500 employees for India team

Atlassian, a leading provider of team collaboration and productivity software, announced its plans to hire over 1,500 employees for its India team as part of a major recruitment drive as the organisation reinforces its commitment to the Indian market.

The maker of Jira, Confluence, Bitbucket and Trello products, which employs more than 1,400 employees at its R&D centre in Bengaluru, plans to grow its India team to over 3,000 by the end of FY24. To help support its plans to scale locally, the hiring will have a strong R&D focus, with roles across engineering, product and design, among others.

“India’s tech talent is world-class, and we want to hire the smartest technical minds across the country. Since opening locally in 2018, India has become home to our fastest-growing R&D site globally, and our doors are now open to talent across all of India. Our engineers are working on hard problems, and significant products for our overall strategy—it's a true R&D hub for us,” Mike Cannon-Brookes, Co-founder and Co-CEO at Atlassian, said in a media release.

As part of its ambitious growth plans, the company said it has set a long-term growth goal of becoming a $10 billion business, alongside a hiring goal to grow its global workforce to over 25,000 by FY26.

Anicut Capital elevates A Jayaseelan as Chief Credit Officer

Indian investment firm Anicut Capital has promoted A Jayaseelan as the new Partner and Chief Credit Officer, who will lead the credit underwriting and work towards the growth of the credit vertical by constructing and managing the portfolio.

Jayaseelan, a core member of the founding team, has been an integral part of Anicut’s credit funds since its inception. In his 18 years of experience in the banking and financial services industry, he has worked with ICICI Bank and other financial institutions.

“The new role of Jayaseelan aligns in with our strategic plan to strengthen our offerings and business propositions'. He will bring his keen insight into fast-growing sectors and will further Anicut's existing successful investment roadmap,” Ashvin Chadha, Managing Partner, Anicut Capital, said in a media release.

Started in 2015 to provide debt funding to small and medium enterprises, Anicut launched Grand Anicut Fund-1 (GAF-1) in 2016. Anicut now handles two debt funds—Grand Anicut Fund I and Grand Anicut Fund II and an angel fund and has assets under management of about Rs 1,600 crore.

Allen Career Institute opens 7 centres in Delhi-NCR region

Coaching institute ALLEN Career Institute has announced its entry into the Delhi-NCR region with seven new centres in Kalu Sarai, Dwaraka, Lajpat Nagar, Janakpuri, Faridabad, Noida, and Gurugram.

The centres will open by September 30, 2022, and focus on preparing students for JEE (Main and Advanced), NEET—UG, Olympiads, and NTSE. The company will also be providing pre-nurture career foundation courses for students from Class 8 to 10, the institute said.

“With our new centres in this region, we will put in all our efforts to provide the best-in-class faculty, infrastructure and study material to help students excel in this region as well,” Dr Brajesh Maheshwari, Chairman, Allen Career Institute, said in a media release.

Students will get admission to these new campuses on the basis of Tallentex, a scholarship exam which would be conducted offline on October 9, 2022, across various centres in the Delhi-NCR region.

Allen started its journey in the organised coaching service sector with Allen Career Institutes 34 years ago in Kota, Rajasthan. It currently operates 41 centres across India, with more than 250,000 students enrolled across all centres in the current session. It recently raised $600 million from Bodhi Tree and also launched its digital arm Allen Digital with its foray into the edtech space.

Kovai.co

Kovai.co appoints Andrew Cloke as Chief Operating Officer

Enterprise SaaS company Kovai.co has appointed Andrew Cloke as the Chief Operating Officer. He will ensure that the firm has the appropriate systems, processes, policies, and procedures in place.

Cloke, who has a strong background in working across cross-functional teams throughout his 34-year-long career, will also help in preparing and communicating budgets for various departments and helping them manage costs.

“His focus and expert knowledge in the industry has been exemplary. As we were looking to strengthen our leadership team at Kovai.co, Andrew was the logical choice since he would help us maintain momentum and growth and build appropriate policies to keep them in place. I am pleased to welcome him into this new role,” Saravana Kumar, Founder and CEO of Kovai.co, said in a media release.

Kovai.co is based out of Coimbatore, India and London, UK. Founded in 2011, the company has crossed a revenue of $10 million ARR and remains completely bootstrapped to date.

Niro, Quikr cross $1 Million monthly disbursals for pre-approved loans

Consumer lending platform Niroand online classifieds platform Quikr crossed the $1 Million monthly disbursals mark for pre-approved loans.

The ticket sizes of loans disbursed for Quikr customers ranged from Rs 50,000 to Rs 7,00,000 across personal loans, home renovations, health expenses, education expenses, vehicle purchases, and others. The companies aim to disburse $100 million through the partnership in the next 24 months, the duo said in a media release.

“The partnership with Niro is of strategic importance to Quikr and we are excited by the prospect of its growth. We have seen the potential of similar partnerships in other aspects of business operations in the past and are looking forward to our first deep partnership in the fintech space,” Prasun Mandal, SVP, Technology and Analytics, Quikr, said.

PhonePe tokenises 1.4 crore debit and credit cards

PhonePe announced that it has tokenised 1.4 crore debit and credit cards on its platform as per RBI’s card tokenisation mandate to help control the risk of fraudulent activities, and secure users’ card information.

Currently, over 80% of PhonePe’s active users have already tokenised their cards, the company said in a media release.

“We believe card tokenisation is a very progressive move by the RBI, and we are on track to meet the September 30th deadline. PhonePe Safecard solution enables our users and merchant partners to continue experiencing the convenience of saved card transactions with increased security,” Deep Agrawal, Head of Payments at PhonePe said.

(This article will be updated with the latest news throughout the day.)

Edited by Kanishk Singh

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