Lending apps in govt’s crosshairs

A section of the ministry’s list accessed by YourStory features a host of lending platforms, including ones that had been pulled up earlier by other authorities, as well as Teen Patti and Rummy apps. Worryingly, some of the fintech platforms claimed the entities on Meity’s list were impersonators.

Lending apps in govt’s crosshairs

Wednesday February 08, 2023,

5 min Read


Swiggy is planning its public listing.

The foodtech major plans to be IPO-ready by September, reported Entrackr, and is expected to file its pre-IPO documents in another 6-8 months. This news comes after Swiggy appointed three independent directors to its board on Monday.

In July 2021, Swiggy’s close competitor Zomato made a stellar debut on the public markets, closing at Rs 126, more than 64% above its issue price of Rs 76. However, it has undergone some value correction since then. On Tuesday, the company closed at Rs 50.50.

Speaking of Zomato, global dining business head Aman Priyadarshi announced his exit from the company and has joined Sequoia-backed Kenko Health. This marks the fifth senior exit from the foodtech company since late last year, including Co-founder Gaurav Gupta and CTO Gunjan Patidar. 

Meanwhile, Paytm’s share price continued to rise, taking its cumulative gain to nearly 28%, after it reported positive Q3 results on Friday. Yesterday, shares surged to almost Rs 670 apiece, closing at Rs 589.30. 

ICYMI: A device that allows you to type LOL only when you truly laugh out loud.

Is this the end of fake laughs?

In today’s newsletter, we will talk about 

  • MeitY’s target list of digital lenders
  • Mensa Brands raises debt funding
  • SoftBank posts losses of $5.9B in Q3

Here’s your trivia for today: Which literary award is known as the “Little Nobel Prize”?


MeitY’s target list of digital lenders

Several lending platforms are in the government’s crosshairs as authorities target hundreds of fintech and gaming platforms for their Chinese links or compliance issues. 

YourStory accessed the names featured in a section of the target list prepared by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). Worryingly, some lending platforms claimed entities bearing their names on MeitY’s list were impersonators.

In a pickle:

  • The Reserve Bank of India also shared with MeitY a list of Digital Lending Apps (DLAs) used by its regulated entities.
  • A KreditBee spokesperson said the domain mentioned on the list was “a clear case of impersonation” and had nothing to do with the company.
  • For Avail Finance, too, the list mentions an Aptoide domain. Ola acquired Avail Finance in April last year, only to shut the service and integrate it with its Ola Money platform last month.
Digital lending app

Funding Alert

Startup: Ushur

Amount: $50M

Round: Series C

Startup: Simple Energy

Amount: $20M

Round: Bridge 

Startup: Winston

Amount: Rs 1 Cr

Round: Equity


Mensa Brands raises debt funding

Bengaluru-based Mensa Brands has raised Rs 300 crore in debt from TradeCred, a Mumbai-based alternative debt platform. The company plans to use the funding for brand acquisitions, product development, supply chain integration, and working capital investment.

House of brands:

  • Fifty ultra-high-net-worth individuals collectively participated in the Rs 300-crore financing arrangement.
  • Mensa has 25 brands across fashion, home, beauty, and FMCG, including Dennis Lingo, Villain, Pebble, and MyFitness.
  • The Tiger Global-backed unicorn reported a revenue of $41.2 million in FY22, in its first year of operations, while it posted a loss of $16.41 million. For FY22, it spent $88.5 million (Rs 670 crore) in acquisitions.
Mensa Brands

Ananth Narayanan, Founder and CEO, Mensa Brands


SoftBank posts losses of $5.9B in Q3

Japanese global investment company SoftBank incurred a loss of $5.9 billion for the October-December 2022 quarter, taking a hit from the steep drop in the shares of its investee companies.

The loss-making quarter follows the profitable July-September quarter of the current fiscal, where the conglomerate posted a profit of around 3.3 trillion yen (approx $25 billion).

In the red:

  • The main investment vehicles of SoftBank—Vision Fund 1, Vision Fund 2, and the LatAm Fund—posted a loss of $5.52 billion. 
  • These funds have now been posting losses for four quarters consecutively.
  • Once seen as a flagbearer for large investments into unlisted technology companies, it has taken a hit after many of these entities went public.

News & updates

  • Bonanza continues: Oil major BP reported record annual profits, more than doubling last year’s total as fossil fuel prices soared following Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine. The British energy giant posted underlying replacement cost profit, used as a proxy for net profit, of $27.7 billion for 2022.
  • Joining the battle: Google owner Alphabet will launch an AI chatbot service called Bard and more artificial intelligence for its search engine as well as developers, an answer to Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) in their rivalry to lead a new wave of computing.
  • Signs of confidence: Goldman Sachs raised $5.2 billion for a private equity fund that will buy early-stage companies that are typically small in size. Goldman Asset Management’s West Street Global Growth Partners I exceeded its initial target and received $3.7 billion.

Which literary award is known as the “Little Nobel Prize”?

Answer: The Hans Christian Andersen Awards.

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