Bengaluru-based financial services startup Setu has raised ₹24.5 crores ($3.5 million) in a seed funding round from Lightspeed India Partners and Gujarat-based venture capital firm Bharat Innovation Fund. The startup plans to use the freshly raised capital to build a technology layer over the traditional banking system.
Founded by Sahil Kini and Nikhil Kumar in 2018, Setu is an application programming interface infrastructure startup which offers APIs across bill payments, savings, credit and payments. The startup’s main product called Collect provides a secure and cost-effective billing platform allowing merchants to collect payments from the customers.
Setu helps early stage fintech companies provide better services to their customers by offering a regulatory sandbox to build their application and test it in a developer program before going live. The startup is also working on to build an API-based product to help banks offer financial products to the under-banked population via a partner distribution system. It has partnered with Kotak and SBI Mutual Fund.
In the future, Setu plans to organize several events including hackathons to attract talented developers and connect with industry leaders for strategic partnerships. Setu competes closely with Bengaluru-based Postman which helps developers and companies supercharge their API workflow through its Chrome extension. It raised ₹35 crores ($7 million) from Nexus Venture Partners in 2016.
Lightspeed India Partners is the Indian arm of the US-based VC firm Lightspeed Venture Partners. The venture firm has invested in several startups from multiple categories like advertising and media, fintech, business services, B2B, healthcare, retail and education. Most recently, it invested ₹11.7 crores in food tech startup FreshMenu in January this year.