10 Dec 2015 13:15 IST

Chennai-based start-up hopes to bridge funding gap for SMEs

Online finance portal Quikrupee.com went live in August

Of the 55 million registered SMEs, just about 35 per cent are in the banking system, according to an IFC survey.

While the entitites that have managed to get timely finance from banks prefer not to comment about the difficulties in getting the support, there are reportedly many more that have been unable to get the accommodation.

“The rest are either not aware of the loan products or find banks’ norms too rigid to seek support,” says Jyotsna Vasudevan, an erstwhile banker and founder of SME online finance portal Quikrupee.com.

Jyotsna and H. D. Sheriff, founders of this Chennai-based start-up, say they specifically decided to address this gap when they mooted the venture. The portal, which went live in August, has so far registered 5,000 visitors.

“We have received thousands of applications, of which 424 are under process; 25 applications have been sanctioned with disbursements totalling ₹4.3 cr. We expect to close another 75 applications by end-December,” Jyotsna told BusinessLine.

Interestingly, the applicants are from tier-II and III towns, including Coimbatore, Hyderabad, Erode, and Ahmedabad, among others.

“Some of them have never availed of a loan earlier and have, therefore, no track record. We help such people and other eligible seekers; visitors to our site can do a self-assessment of their credit rating as soon as they come on board and within two-three minutes. The eligibility criteria, including the bank’s policy, are uploaded on the portal itself,” she explained.

Quikrupee has tied up with 16 bankers (mostly private banks and NBFCs) and another seven are in the pipeline, Jyotsna said.