Venture debt firm Stride Ventures has led a debt round of ₹15 crore in ZipLoan, a technology-enabled lending platform that provides loans to MSMEs.

Through their customised offerings and deep relationships across banks and corporates, Stride aims to be a strategic partner in Ziploan’s journey.

This investment marks Stride’s first foray into fintech lending. The investment amount, which will be disbursed in two tranches, underlines the firm’s commitment to leverage traditional banking capital to cater to the start-up ecosystem.

ZipLoan addresses the need for working capital loans for kirana stores and micro industries. Its proprietary ZipScore platform that tests creditworthiness of a borrower, has so far helped it maintain its non-performing assets (NPA) at under 3 per cent. ZipLoan has disbursed approximately ₹400 crore across 10,000 borrowers and is present in Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Indore, Jaipur, Lucknow and Dehradun.

Ishpreet Gandhi, founder and managing partner, Stride Ventures, said, “We are excited to partner with ZipLoan in their pursuit to revolutionise lending to small business owners. It is our endeavour at Stride to make credit accessible and efficient as we try to prevent equity dilution and make entrepreneurs truly ‘Atmanirbhar’. The company has exhibited tremendous growth without compromising the quality of the loan book. We are confident that the company will continue to scale even in these challenging times.”

Stride Ventures launched its maiden fund in 2019 with a target corpus of ₹500 crore and plans to invest in 35-40 start-ups over the next three years.

“We are privileged to partner with Stride Ventures as they help us realise our mission of addressing funding needs of small business owners. The MSME segment is the most important contributor to our economy, but still continues to be credit-starved. Even during the current crisis, the MSME segment has shown great resilience demonstrated by strong collections we have had,” said Kshitij Puri, co-founder and CEO, ZipLoan.