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Published on: July 13, 2020, 8:01 a.m.
A changemaker
  • Offering small business support

By Arbind Gupta. Assistant Editor, Business India

At a time when the SME sector is passing through a challenging situation, UK-headquartered start-up CreditEnable is all geared up to help these small businesses with its technology-led tools and solutions in India which is currently its major market. The company, founded in 2017, operates an entirely digital and curated marketplace for SME finance, effectively acting as a digital bridge between SME lenders and borrowers. The fintech venture provides decision optimising solutions to help SME lenders grow efficiently as also supports them to access affordable credit from formal financial institutions.

Operating in India through its wholly-owned subsidiary, CreditEnable India (based in Mumbai) has already made its presence felt in the Indian SME space. The company, co-founded by Nadia Sood (currently the global CEO of the company), is backed by ultra HNIs; venture capital Alter Global backed by the founder of Ripple; and family offices, including Aditya Ghosh (ex-IndiGo CEO and current board member of OYO); Cris Conde, former CEO of Sun Gard; Alan Morgan, chairman of Adfisco, former head of McKinsey’s financial services practice in UK, Europe and the Middle East and co-founder of MMC Ventures; Chris Slater, co-founder of Simply Business; Floreat family office and Astia, a Silicon Valley-based Investors group.

The company with its tech-enabled, managed market place/platform quickly identifies the right lender with the right product for SME borrowers and assists them digitally to secure an appropriate loan. While operating one of the largest SME credit market places and probably the only managed one, the company not only restricts itself to just facilitation of credit process for these SMEs but also handholds them and helps make them credit worthy or eligible in case some of them fail to qualify due to lower credit scores.

In a very short period of its operation in India, the SME fintech solutions provider has significantly strengthened its presence in the country’s SME space. From processing around 3,000 loan applications in a month in November last, the SME credit market place is currently processing over 20,000 applications per month, a jump of over 600 per cent. Ticket size of these loans varies from Rs10 lakh to as high as Rs40 crore. The company, already a pan-India player, is currently focussing on SME clusters in several states including NCR, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal.

Enhanced reach

Apart from its own channel, CreditEnable is aggressively enhancing its reach, associating with various trade and industry bodies as also SME-focused associations. It has recently partnered with The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) and launched its ‘Changemakers Programme’ in conjunction with the world’s largest SME association representing 70 million SMEs. The programme aims to help 30 million CAIT members enter the formal debt market where they can significantly reduce the cost of debt.  Besides, now the company has also partnered with Experian, one of India’s leading credit bureaus and data analytics and decisioning companies to offer lenders and SMEs with prospective borrowers’ personal and business credit scores.

On the other hand, working with CreditEnable, lenders spend their time underwriting loans that match their exact credit and risk parameters, reducing transactions costs, lowering risk, achieving better outcomes and a faster deployment of capital. The firm’s marketplace in India currently caters to more than 20 leading lenders with $70 billion of loan books. These lenders are private banks, NBFCs and others, including names like ICICI Bank, Kotak, Bajaj, IDFC Bank, Ujjivan and IntelleGrow.

“We are a global credit insights and technology solutions company that applies proprietary data analytics, deep learning and AI to build solutions to the world’s biggest financial challenges. CreditEnable’s lender solutions enable profitable growth by substantially reducing the time involved with underwriting SME loans, provide efficient access to quality borrowers and improve the quality of SME loan books. The firm’s borrower solutions help SMEs better understand lenders’ credit requirements, get prepared for debt and secure the capital they need at an affordable rate,” says Akbar Khan, CEO, CreditEnable India, who was the CEO and Board member of Intellegrow, a speciality SME lender, a part of the Aavishkar group. Prior to his role at Intellegrow, Khan spent five years at General Electric, where he was managing director and head of corporate development/M&A for GE South Asia and MENAT.

In 2019, CreditEnable was selected to join the Accenture Fintech Innovation Lab, a programme helping start-ups build connections with relevant decision makers, gain valuable insights to take business to the next level, and catapult visibility with the people who matter. The fintech has won numerous awards including being named one of the ‘Most Influential Financial Technology Companies 2020’ by Financial Technologist. As an entrant to the Global SME Finance Awards, the company was shortlisted as a Responsible Digital Innovator of 2018, by the International Finance Corporation.

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