Gurugram-based fintech startup Aye Finance has raised ₹180 crores in debt from several lenders in India and abroad at a time when the company’s operations are impacted following the RBI directive of a three-month moratorium on term loans.
The debt funding will help the startup to remain in the market as the NBFC is unable to recover payments amidst the moratorium period. The startup will use the funds to support the MSME sector and provide business loans to the underserved business sector during this time of crisis.
Sanjay Sharma, managing director of Aye Finance said, “Our credibility in repayments and the milestones Aye has achieved has given our debt providers considerable comfort and confidence. Our ability to raise money even in these testing times is a testament to that.”
India Ratings and Research have upgraded Aye Finance’s Long Term issuer rating to A- (Stable Outlook) from BBB+ on March 24 this year.
Founded by Vikram Jetley and Sanjay Sharma in 2014, Aye Finance provides B2B loans to unbanked micro-enterprises in India. The company is offering its financial products in 14 states and plans to expand into Bihar, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, and Gujarat in the coming years.
Aye Finance has more than 173 branches and 2,900 employees. It has disbursed more than 2 lakh loans amounting to ₹2,700 crores to more than 1,96,000 small scale businesses. With the fresh infusion of funds, the startup plans to address the credit requirements of the micro-enterprises during the ongoing financial crisis.
The startup is backed by investors including CapitalG, SAIF Partners, A91 Partners, MAJ Invest, LGT and Falcon Edge. These investors have provided equity funds to the startup. Aye Finance has debt lines from FMO, BlueOrchard, SBI, ICICI Bank, HDFC, responsibility and many other institutions.
The funding round is significant for Aye Finance because the whole NBFC industry is suffering due to the coronavirus pandemic. Two other NBFCs, IndiaLends and Creditmate has earlier resorted to salary deductions to stay afloat in the market. IndiaLends has offered leave without pay to some of its employees and deducted steep pay cuts ranging from 20% to 50% based on monthly salary.