Kunal Shah’s latest startup Cred which was in talks among various media outlets last month has finally announced its features. Cred is a credit card bill payment platform which rewards its users for timely bill payments with discounts on shopping on various sites.
The startup will also discover all the hidden charges that incur in credit card bills and convert them as points which the customers can then remove. While rewarding users for payment doesn’t sound like an extraordinary idea, Kunal’s reputation in the market will do its magic. After all, it’s not about the idea, its all about the execution.
We all know Kunal for building FreeCharge and selling it to Snapdeal for a whopping $400 million. Cred appears to have some of the features of Freecharge; like it offers rewards – the same feature FreeCharge provided when it disbursed coupons to people who recharge their phone.
Cred has partnered with companies like Ixigo, Airbnb, BookMyShow, CureFit and many others to provide discounts to customers. The only difference between Cred and FreeCharge is the target audience. While FreeCharge was focused on a mass audience who were actively involved in online shopping, Cred is focused on credit card holders with a credit score of more than 750.
“This product is for people who have high credit scores. Our focus here is to reward people who have paid their bills on time. And right now, credit score is an objective metric,” Shah said in an interview. And it’s not just the product that’s meant for people with high credit scores — even employees must have a credit score of 800. “Every single team member has a credit score of higher than 800. We had to reject 20% of the people we interviewed (at the top) because their credit scores were too low,” Kunal Shah said.
There are only 40 million credit card holders in India. Cred is targeting a niche market. However, this is a highly affluent market with high income, and thus more profits can be made out of them. Kunal Shah has also hinted about adding insurance and investments within the app, however not officially confirmed.
“It’s unfair that the good actors get the same financial terms as the bad actors (delinquents). We want to achieve three main things for our customers. We want to make them pay less interest, fewer charges, lower their cost of insurance and similar areas. We want to make them earn more by increasing their avenues of income. And we want to make them invest better by providing them sufficient knowledge (about money management),” he said.
Even before being launched, Kunal’s history and connections have helped Cred raise $25 million. The whole startup ecosystem will be watching the startup in anticipation. What do you think about the future of Cred? Tell us in comments.