Strengthens its reach in tier-3/4 towns and cities in the country
BharatPe, India’s leading fintech company for merchants, today announced that it has expanded its footprint to 400 towns and cities across India. The expansion is in line with the company’s commitment to driving financial inclusion across Bharat by enabling wider adoption of digital payments as well as addressing the credit gap for SMEs and offline retailers. The company also shared that it has recorded consistent growth in payments TPV and has recently achieved the milestone of US$ 20 bn in annualized TPV.
Last year, BharatPe had announced that it aims to scale its presence to 300 cities by March 2023. The company has aggressively expanded to tier-2, 3 and 4 towns and cities since then, as it believed in the opportunity that tier-2 and beyond towns and cities of the country had to offer. The company has rolled out its UPI QR payment acceptance service and loans to merchant partners in the new cities in the first phase. BharatPe also plans to top up these services with other fintech products like BharatSwipe in the second phase over the coming months.
Commenting on the company’s expansion, Nishant Jain, Chief Business Officer, BharatPe, said, “In line with our endeavour to drive financial inclusion amongst the unbanked and the underserved merchants of Bharat, BharatPe has been expanding its reach and taking UPI QR to tier-2, 3 and 4 towns and cities of the country since 2020. Last year, we had set a target of expanding our footprint to 300 cities by March 2023. I am happy to share that we have not only been able to achieve this milestone much ahead of time, but also surpassed it by a mile. This is a great motivation for a brand like ours that is built on the ethos of empowering MSMEs, offline merchants and kirana store owners of the country who we believe are the key growth drivers of the economy.”
Added Nishant, “We stay committed to building Digital India and are working aggressively to take digital payments to the merchants of Bharat. We are seeing steady growth in digital payments. Our annualised TPV in payments has reached US$ 20 billion recently, up from US$18.5 bn in June end. With the wide expansion across the length and breadth of Bharat, I am confident that we will witness continued growth and will easily surpass our target of US$ 30 bn in payments by March 2023. I am a firm believer of the fact that the next stage of growth for our business will be driven by tier-2, 3 and 4 towns and cities and hence, we will continue to focus on enabling credit for merchants in these areas as well as build new-age fintech products that can further empower their growth story.”
BharatPe has been on an exponential growth trajectory and recently closed one of its highest growth quarters. It facilitated over INR 3600 Cr in loans in Q1, FY23; recording a staggering growth of 112% over the last quarter (Q4, FY22). The company facilitated disbursals to over 1.2 lac merchants in Q1, FY23, up from 66,000 merchants in the last quarter of FY22. BharatPe also hit an all-time high of US$ 18.5 bn in annualized TPV in the quarter. The company also recorded consistent growth in its other business lines including card acceptance POS businesses (BharatSwipe) and its Investment Platform for merchants (growth of over 30% vs. the last quarter).
BharatPe was founded in 2018 with the vision of making financial inclusion a reality for Indian merchants. In 2018, BharatPe launched India’s first UPI interoperable QR code, the first zero MDR payment acceptance service.
The company has already facilitated disbursement of loans totalling to over ₹7500 crores to over 400,000 merchants, since launch. BharatPe’s POS business processes payments of over US$ 4 bn annually on its POS machines. It has a network of 1.25 lac+ machines across cities. BharatPe has raised over US$ 650 million in equity and debt, till date. The company’s list of marquee investors includes Tiger Global, Dragoneer Investment Group, Steadfast Capital, Coatue Management, Ribbit Capital, Insight Partners, Steadview Capital, Beenext, Amplo and Sequoia Capital. In June 2021, the company announced the acquisition of PAYBACK India, the country’s largest multi-brand loyalty program company with 100 million+ members.
In October 2021, the consortium of Centrum Financial Services Limited (Centrum) and BharatPe, was issued a Small Finance Bank (SFB) license by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). BharatPe also made its entry in the Buy Now Pay Later segment with the launch of postpe in October 2021.