Money & Banking

Lendingkart ramps up headcount, promotes high performers

Sangeetha Chengappa Bengaluru | Updated on October 15, 2020

Harshvardhan Lunia

In anticipation of business recovery post-Diwali, digital lending start-up Lendingkart has hired 50 people, paid out 10-15 per cent salary increments, and have given promotions and bonuses to 15 per cent of its employees in September. With the new hires, the start-up’s headcount now stands at 450 people, a top executive told BusinessLine.

Soon after the outbreak of the pandemic, Lendingkart had laid off 20-25 per cent of its workforce in May, as a part of its annual appraisal cycle and rightsizing efforts due to the impact of Covid on its lending business.

“Our business dropped below 50 per cent from March to September, compared to the same period last year. However, post-Diwali, leading up to the January-March quarter of 2021, we expect business to bounce back and hit 100 per cent recovery to pre-Covid levels by March. Immediate recovery will be driven by Tier 3,4,5 customers in rural India who have seen good monsoons, followed by Tier 1 and 2 customers in the January-March quarter,” said Harshvardhan Lunia, co-founder and managing director, Lendingkart.

Since its inception, the start-up has disbursed short-term, collateral-freeworking capital loans at an average ticket size of ₹4-5 lakhto micro and small businesses across 1,300 locations, with cumulative disbursals totalling ₹5,500 crore and supporting more than 90,000 businesses. Its loan ticket sizes range from as low as ₹50,000 up to ₹1 crore for a period of 1 to 36 months.

Asked whether Covid would adversely affect the average ticket size of loans disbursed and NPA, Lunia said: “Yes, we expect NPA, which is at 4 per cent now, to go up by 30-40 per cent and average loan ticket size to drop to ₹3 lakh to ₹3.5 lakh. We have hired 50 people in operations, technology and new business development roles to support recovery in the business that we expect post-Diwali.”

In FY20, Lendingkart disbursed 53,000 loans, an 85 per cent increase over the previous fiscal. Its Assets Under Management (AUM) as of FY20 stood at ₹2,400 crore, an increase of 80 per cent over FY19.

Equity infusion

Lendingkart Group has received additional equity infusion of ₹319 crore in the past 12 months. Its investors, including Fullerton Financial Holdings (FFH), Saama Capital, Mayfield India, India Quotient, Bertelsmann India Investments and Sistema Asia Fund, have consistently supported continued investments in its digital lending model and technology upgrades.

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Published on October 15, 2020
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