You have heard of instant groceries; now, say hello to instant credit. Making this possible is Bengaluru-based Uni Cards, a new-age fintech company with a mission to change the way people interact with credit. Credit products have typically been one-size-fits-all offerings, with rewards and credit limits being used for differentiation. “We want to go beyond that,” says Nitin Gupta, founder & CEO, Uni. “We believe that different users have different needs when it comes to credit.”
An alumnus of IIT Delhi and IIM Ahmedabad, Gupta started his career as founder and CEO of Khojguru and then led the PayU India team as co-founder and CEO. Uni, his latest enterprise, aims to offer Indian consumers a range of differentiated credit products. The firm is currently doing Rs 175 crore in monthly disbursals.
Uni Pay 1/3rd card, the company’s flagship product, was conceived keeping in mind the fact that a large proportion of consumers, irrespective of the segment they belong to, face a liquidity crunch once or twice a year. “We realised that most people face such a liquidity crunch, to address which no good solution existed in the market. The solutions available to the consumer in such a situation are not efficient, whether it is borrowing from friends/family, revolving on a credit card with a high interest rate, going for a personal loan, or breaking a fixed deposit,” Gupta points out.
The Pay 1/3rd card splits your transactions into three parts, to be repaid over three months at no extra cost or interest. If the user wants, they can pay in full in the first month and get 1% cashback. Basically, the proposition being offered is the flexibility to choose between 1% reward and repayment over three months at no extra charges.
The Uni Pay 1/3rd card provides a credit limit in the range of Rs 20,000 to Rs 6,00,000, varying from customer to customer on the basis of the risk profile, among other factors. The card has been built specifically for super-prime customers, says Gupta. “These are customers with the best risk profiles in the market. Personalisation is the core tenet on which we are building Uni Cards. Given our growth, we have multiple products in the pipeline that would offer different benefits, being targeted at other consumer segments. Overall, creditworthy customers in India constitute our target customer base”.
Anyone between the ages of 21 and 60 years who is recognised by a credit bureau is eligible to apply for Pay 1/3rd. It is available for both Android and iOS users, with prospective customers having to download the app to apply for the card. Powered by Visa, Pay 1/3rd is both a physical and a digital card. The physical card works across retailers that accept Visa cards. The card is delivered to the user typically within 4-5 days of an application, while the digital card can be used instantly post onboarding for online purchases.
Uni makes its revenues predominantly from interchange, cross-sell revenue, subvention income from merchant partners, interest income when a customer converts transactions into longer tenure EMIs and late fees. “Another source of revenue for us is the carry-forward fee. Unlike for a credit card where a user is charged daily interest on paying their minimum due amount, we charge users only a small carry-forward fee on the pending balance. They can avail this to avoid late fee charges,” reveals Gupta.
Uni has raised $88.5 million so far from marquee investors like General Catalyst, Eight Roads, Elevation Capital, Light Speed and Accel India. The fintech is currently present in 130 cities across India, including Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Pune, Chennai, Kolkata, Ahmedabad, Lucknow, and Jaipur. “Our ambition is to cater to the credit needs of different customer segments with customised products. Our product roadmap has multiple offerings that are being designed with this in mind,” he adds.
AT A GLANCE
Company name: Uni Cards
Founders: Nitin Gupta, founder & CEO, Laxmikant Vyas, co-founder & chief risk officer, Prateek Jindal, co-founder & chief product officer
Funding: Uni raised $70 million in a Series A round led by General Catalyst in December 2021. Last month, it raised Rs 50 crore in debt from Stride Ventures
Flagship product: Uni Pay 1/3rd card