Rupeek – An Asset-Backed Online Lending Platform, Discarding Conventional Brick and Mortar lending Models


Rupeek proposes gold loans at the shopper’s doorstep and finalizes the loan underwriting-to-disbursal procedure within 30 minutes. By cutting down on charges with an online-only policy, Rupeek offers gold loans at an interest of 0.89% per month. Its low functional costs and credit evaluation tools are making credit cheaper for borrowers and investing more useful for lenders. The Company seeks to bring financial incentives for the masses and introduce transparent products, people-friendly and provide value for lenders and borrowers.

About Rupeek

Rupeek, a monetary services company, features an online lending platform that specialises in credit risk, gold loans, and personal loans. It offers lending solutions for lenders and borrowers. SumitManiyar is the founder and CEO of Bengaluru-based gold-loan startup Rupeek. Rupeek was established in 2015 and headquartered in Bangalore, Karnataka. Federal Bank and KarurVysya Bank are the trusted lending supporters for this startup. This enterprise operates in cities like Mumbai, Pune, Vadodara, Hyderabad, Rajkot, Chennai, Jaipur, to name a few.

Arranging the Fragmented Gold Loans Market

Esteemed at over $300 Mn presently, and with over INR 400 Cr worth of loans disbursed every month, Rupeek which, an online marketplace for gold loans, raised $60 million across two rounds (first in August 2019) backed by marquee investors such as Sequoia Capital, Bertelsmann, Accel Partners, GGV Capital, Tanglin Venture Partners, Korea’s KB Investments as well as Flipkart cofounder BinnyBansal. The gold-loan expanse in the organised market is mostly overlooked by conventional NBFCs such as Muthoot Finance and Manappuram Finance. Both firms incredibly operate through a network of offline outlets and agents. The 2018 KPMG report states thatMuthoot and Mannapuram commanded almost 81% of the organised gold loan market.

According to Maniyar, most companies are tapping three basic models – customer acquisition models, supplier capital input model and loan distribution model. Also, competing directly with the existing players and NBFCs would have been folly given that the market was tilted towards retail selling.

Rupeek is now struggling towards add-on products and asset classes in addition to the gold loan product. However, the company hasn’t formally declared any new developments since June when they launched a zero contact loan product. In the meantime, they have increased their market outreach initiatives with digital and TV marketing across vernacular channels with local celebrities as well as vernacular user interface options for the smartphone-only service.

Looking Beyond Gold Loans?

Currently, Rupeek has ascertained two trainingcentres to train its field agents. The startup is concentrated on expanding the number of customers each field agent can cater to, boosting to reduce the cost of distribution by 50% compared to pre-Covid numbers. Rupeek currently assists over 125K customers across 25 cities. But in the past 18 months, customer concern towards multi-asset loan products like mortgages, unsecured loans, and vehicle financing has renovated. This is where the next set of products will come from.

Maniyar highlighted that Rupeek has been witnessing repeat transactions, up to once per quarter across at least 80% of its customer base with many migrating to unsecured loan classes. The proprietor analytic system weeds through 125 odd data point to build user value scores that are helping Rupeek build new products. At present, Rupeek is using the in-house credit record data to offer unsecured loans to their customers. Apart from expanding lender partnerships, the startup is also labouring on credit solutions on the lines of a credit card, although it isn’t ready to divulge details yet. Maniyar also explains that more frequency and stickiness based products have to come and are looking forward to redesigning products in a way to achieve scale in the single product category first.

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