Ratan Tata-backed online discount brokerage Upstox turns profitable

Sangeetha Chengappa Bengaluru | Updated on February 20, 2018

The firm has so far raised a total of $4 million in funding

Upstox, an online discount brokerage firm funded by Ratan Tata, Kalaari Capital and GVK Davix, says its strong technology-heavy model to provide brokerage services at the lowest cost has taken the company to profitability.

Formerly called RKSV Securities, the firm was founded as a proprietary trading firm in 2008 and entered the retail brokerage space in 2012.

“We clocked 200 per cent growth in monthly revenues in the past year; our exchange turnover increased to ₹14,000-18,000 crore per day, up from ₹5,000-6,000 crore per day last year. Our client base has grown to 80,000, up from 25,000 last year. We are targeting 300 per cent increase in turnover and customer numbers this year,” said Ravi Kumar, co-founder and Director of Upstox.

The company, which has raised a total of $4 million in funding to date, became the first in category to introduce commission-free trading, ensuring transparency in pricing by offering ‘zero’ brokerage on equity delivery trades and a flat rate of ₹20 per intra-day order for all other segments including futures and options, commodities, etc.

“India’s brokerage industry is headed the global way where discount brokerages have overtaken the traditional, big-ticket broking firms and banks. Discount broking is the future and the way forward for India as we witness more and more retail participation,” he said.

Upstox witnesses high participation from customers in tier III cities and small towns (55 per cent), besides tier I cities (45 per cent) as its high-end tech platform can be supported on even 2G connections.

“We follow a hybrid model, which allows every step of trading, right from account opening, client on-boarding to order execution online, which is backed by a strong offline distribution system as well,” said Shrinivas Viswanath, co-founder and CTO, Upstox. “Our platform not only gives choices to traders on different modes of trading, but also provides an open platform to third-party developers to develop their own apps.”

Published on February 20, 2018

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