Monexo, the peer-to-peer (P2P) banking market place, first floated in Hong Kong by a former Citibank honcho, is now betting big on the Indian market, particularly in the wake of the government’s digitisation initiatives and drive for ‘financial inclusion’ beyond bank account opening. Monexo, which already has over 3000 customers in India, seems well set to roll out collateral free SME loans in India by the Q2, next fiscal, said Mukesh Bubna, founder-CEO, Monexo.
Peer to peer lending platforms refer to a business model that brings together lenders and borrowers – individual and institution -with funds changing hands after proper due diligence related to know your customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML) procedures. Incidentally, factoring in the growing popularity of the segment, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) released a discussion paper in April on the proposed guidelines for the participants.
“We are eyeing major share in the peer-to-peer lending business having potential of growing to Rs 10,000 crore in the next five years and we are targeting Rs 300 crore business in the first year of operation. Mind you, when it comes to lending, there is a large ‘missing middle’ and will tap that segment,” said Bubna, who had nearly 20 years of consumer banking experience with Citibank in different geographies-India, Singapore and Hong Kong. His last assignment with Citibank was as the regional director for product & marketing of Citibank and prior to that he was CFO for cards and unsecured lending for the Citibank APAC region.
Monexo, which at present operates out of its Indian head office in Chennai, has teamed up with CRIF, one of the key players worldwide specialising in credit information, business information, analytics, scoring, decision and credit management solutions, IDBI Trusteeship Services Limited (ITSL), India’s Leading Trusteeship company jointly promoted by IDBI Bank, LIC of India, and GIC of India, IDFC Bank, LexisNexis, a leading global provider of content-enabled workflow solutions designed specifically for professionals in the legal, risk management, corporate, government, law enforcement, accounting and academic markets, Jocata Financial Advisory and Technology, an innovative products and services firm specialising in KYC, AML and combating the financing of terrorism (CFT) compliance for financial services industry clients and Kochhar & Co, a leading law firm in India with pan India presence.
At present, Monexo is offering personal unsecured loans of Rs 50,000 to Rs 5 lakh, at interest rates in the range of 13 per cent and 30 per cent, depending on various parameters.