Svasti Microfinance raises $4.8 million to extend financial services to low-income Indians

ImpactAlpha Editor

Dennis Price

ImpactAlpha, February 13 – Nordic Microfinance Initiative, Serum Institute of India’s Adar Poonawalla and other investors have invested 340 million rupees ($4.8 million) in Mumbai-based microlender Svasti Microfinance.
The 10-year-old firm serves around 141,000 customers across 38 branches in four Indian states. Its total portfolio stands at 255 crores ($36 million). The firm expects to close the year with a portfolio of 350 crores ($49.3 million).
The new funding will provide exits for early investors, which include Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, Bamboo Capital Partners, venture capitalist Sajid Fazalbhoy and angel investor Rajiv Dadlani. Svasti will also use the new capital to expand its loan portfolio to small businesses and introduce new products including consumer finance and insurance.
“Over the next couple of years, Svasti will be a diversified financial services provider to the millions of uncounted low and middle income households across India,” said Svasti co-founder Arunkumar Padmanabhan.
Nordic Microfinance Initiative has invested in other Indian microlenders, including Fusion Microfinance (which it exited in December), Satin Creditcare, Utkarsh Microfinance and RGVN (North East) Microfinance.
“We are very impressed with the platform that Svasti has laid so far, by building a high-quality portfolio over the years that has shown great resilience even through black swan events like demonetization as a result of its strong processes, backed up by smart technology and a strong team,” said Nordic Microfinance Initiative’s Arthur Sletteberg.