BharatPe lines up to extend small value loans to merchants

This digital payment startup wants to co-lend in collaboration with other financiers as well and try to keep the interest rates under control once it gets a licence.
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New Delhi-based digital payment startup BharatPe has lined up to extend small value loans of short durations to merchants. Backed by Sequoia Capital, the startup has partnered with Apollo Finvest and various Non-Banking Financial Institutions (NBFCs) for these loans and plans to rope in more partners in the near future, say media reports.

The development means it joins an already crowded club of other internet companies such as Cars24, Flipkart, and Ola which have also taken a plunge into credit.

Ashneer Grover, Co-founder BharatPe, says, "We have started a pilot for our lending product in Bengaluru and given out a few hundred loans only based on the cash flow that the merchant generates through our QR code. Lending will be one of our monetisation plans and we intend to scale it up slowly from here."

This digital payment startup wants to co-lend in collaboration with other financiers as well and try to keep the interest rates under control once it gets a licence.

BharatPe is a digital payments company serving offline retailers and businesses that empower the merchants to accept UPI payments for free through the BharatPe QR. It offers loans in the range of Rs 10,000 to Rs 1 lakh and charges an interest rate of 1.67 percent per month.

Merchants can sign up instantly and start receiving the funds immediately in their bank account. BharatPe makes payment acceptance simple by offering merchants a single interface for all UPI apps such as PayTM, PhonePe, Google Pay, BHIM, Mobikwik, Freecharge, True Caller, and 100 other UPI apps.

The company is present in 13 cities and has approximately 7 lakh offline merchants base as of now.

BharatPe has reported more than 10 million transactions per month and the total amount settled through the platform stood at $400 million, according to the latest transaction numbers.

"The target is to reach a billion dollars, but we haven't set a timeline yet on that," Grover said.


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