Digital broker Upstox aims to add 1 million new customers in six months

KR Srivats New Delhi | Updated on June 23, 2020

We are targeting Tier II, III centres to digitally on-board new to equity market participants, says Co-founder & CEO Ravi Kumar

Ratan Tata and Tiger Global-backed Upstox, a digital only retail focused discount broking house, is looking to ride on the recent surge in retail investor participation in equity markets. It is aiming to add at least one million new customers in next six months, a top official said.

The new digital ecosystem developed in recent years including Aadhaar and e-KYC process is also expected to aid in ramping up of customer base in the coming days, Ravi Kumar, Co-Founder & CEO, Upstox, told BusinessLine.

As on date, Upstox has a customer base of one million, most of which built in the last two years. As of June 2018, the customer base stood at one lakh. About 70 per cent of the customers were active in the last 12 months.

“Upstox was the 48th broker in the list of active customers in 2017 and today we stand at 4th position. We think the next one million customers will be on boarded in the next six months,” Kumar said.

He said that the real opportunity in India is to on board the millions of Indians who are new to equity markets.

“India is such an exciting emerging market. Capturing the pole position does not excite us. How do we get first time users on our platform? How do we get to open 10 to 20 million accounts. That’s what gets us excited. That’s the opportunity we have. We are not trying to steal business from other brokers. We are trying to get first time users to open their demat accounts,” Kumar said.

Upstox wants to work hard over the next 10 years to change the financial services landscape and will focus energies on getting new market customers, especially from tier 3 and 4 cities.

Currently, more than 75 per cent of Upstox’s customer base is below 35 years of age. More than 85 per cent of its order flow are through smartphones, which is very different from a bank brokerage. As many as 80 per cent of its customers are from Tier 2 and Tier 3 towns.

Kumar said that the number of orders put through Upstox has doubled in the past three months — some of it due to Covid-19 and largely because of the customers that are getting added to the system.

He also said that Upstox’s business had seen accelerated growth ever since Aadhaar came into play and the brokerage could open accounts digitally. “Before that even though we were a digital broker, the account opening was paper driven process.” he said.

Also, there has been a big rush among younger people to open accounts during the recent lockdown and Upstox could be one of the few that could open accounts digitally.

Published on June 22, 2020

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