For most people in India, having to interact with banks does not bring them joy. Banks in the South Asian market are notorious for making unannounced spam calls to sell loans and credit cards to customers, even when explicitly asked not to.
Plus, when a customer contacts a bank with an inquiry, it can take forever to get the job done. Take for example ICICI Bank, the third largest bank in India and until recently my only banking partner for over six years.
She is now in her third month to find out who exactly in her relationship with Amazon is supposed to reissue me a credit card. I have moved on with my life, and it seems they did too, probably even before they saw my practice.
Small and medium-sized businesses are also not very fanatical about banks. If you operate a startup at an early stage, no one can guess if you will ever be able to convince a bank to issue you a corporate account. So, of course, the startups, Razorpay and Open, took it upon themselves to fix this experience.
Also for consumers, in recent years, dozens of new companies have appeared to improve this banking experience. If you are a teenager, or just out of college, or a working professional, or you don’t have a credit score, there are companies that can get you a credit card and a loan.
But even these services have a cap of some kind. And customers are not loyal to any startup.
“The relationship of a client is always with the entity where he parks his savings deposit,” he said. Jitendra gupta, a high-profile entrepreneur who has spent a decade in the fintech world. Since these clients are not parking their money with fintech, “startups have not been able to disrupt the bank. That is the harsh reality.”
So what is the alternative? Gupta, who co-founded CitrusPay (sold to Naspers’ PayU) and served as PayU’s managing director, has been thinking about these challenges for more than two years.
“If you really want to change the banking industry, you cannot operate from one side. You have to fight from the center, where they deposit their money. It’s a time-consuming process and requires a lot of startup capital and experience with banks, ”he told TechCrunch in an interview.
After more than a year and a half of raising around $ 24 million, from Sequoia Capital India, 3one4 Capital, Amrish rau, Kunal shah, Kunal bahl, Tanglin Venture Partners, Rainmatter and others: Gupta is ready to launch what he believes will address many of the problems people face with their banks.
His new startup, called Jupiter, wants to bring “delight” to the banking experience, and will launch in India on Thursday.
“We believe that a bank account should be a smart account, where it provides you with information, shares personalized advice and guides you to achieve some financial discipline,” he said.
Jupiter will undoubtedly also offer loans and other financial services to its clients. But instead of making irrelevant calls to clients, it will assess which of its clients are falling short of money and give them the option of taking a line of credit from their own app, he said. “Upselling doesn’t have to happen through spam. It has to happen through contextualization and personalization. “
“Jupiter has been built on deep integration with the underlying bank, allowing the consumer to have a frictionless experience for all of their banking needs,” said Amrish Rau, CEO of Pine Labs, co-founder of CitrusPay and longtime friend of Gupta. long time.
The startup, which employs 115 people, has developed a series of products for customers to join from day one. Products include the ability to buy now and pay later at UPI, a feature that was first offered to the market by Jupiter, and a mutual fund portfolio analyzer. A debit card, in-app chat with a customer service agent, spending categorization, finding the right card, determining existing health insurance coverage and more are ready to ship, the startup said.
Jupiter is currently working to provide zero margin on currency transactions and frictionless two-factor authentication. The start-up has posted a public Trello page where you have described the features you are working on and when you expect to ship them, as well as the features suggested by your beta test clients. “I want to establish full transparency in what we are working on to build trust with customers,” said Gupta.
Jupiter will have its own customer relations team that will engage with the startup’s users. The startup, which last month opened a waiting list for customers to sign up, had amassed more than 25,000 applications two weeks ago.
Even Jupiter, who one day wishes to disrupt the banking sector, now has to partner with the banks. Its partners are Federal Bank and Axis Bank.
I asked Gupta about the excitement his investors see in Jupiter. “Everybody believes, as they see with financial technology giants like Nubank globally, that we will become a complete bank,” he said.
But for now, Gupta said he is not looking to partner with more banks. “I don’t want Jupiter to attract customers because they want to bank with Federal or Axis. I want them to come to Jupiter because they want to do banking with Jupiter, ”he said.
In the next 12 months, the startup expects to serve more than 1 million customers.