Qbera is a Bangalore-based company offering digital, quick, hassle-free personal loans to people when they need them. They believe that getting a loan should be as fast, easy and painless as ordering a pizza or hailing a cab. Qbera empowers employees of more than 7,00,000 companies in India to get access to personal loans digitally. This company makes instant lending decisions and getting money into borrowers accounts in as little as 8 hours.
About the founders
Aditya Kumar, CEO and Founder, Qbera started his career as an investment banker with Lehman Brothers, London where he gained experience across mergers and acquisitions, CMBS origination and securitization. Post that he was the Chief Investment Officer of U.P Hotels in India which owns and operates a five-star chain of hotels called the Clarks Group. He has also been the Executive Director of a large export-oriented garment manufacturer which is a supplier to some of the leading fashion brands. Before founding Qbera.com, Aditya was the co-founder of an International Baccalaureate World School. He holds an economics degree from University of Warwick and a masters degree from Cass Business School London.
Q.: What is the problem you are trying to solve? Can you share with us any insights that led you to believe that this is a big enough problem?
Ans: Qbera identified that there exists a segment of massively underserved consumers who found it difficult to get access to clean credit. Observing that a large section of individuals employed with uncategorized/unlisted companies and those with sub-prime credit scores found it difficult to get access to credit, Qbera evolved a framework that takes a panoramic view of consumer profiles and determines creditworthiness and repayment capacity by looking at a long list of relevant parameters. Noting that being employed with an unlisted company is no reason to needlessly face rejection, Qbera is now serving the needs of individuals employed with over 7,00,000 companies in India.
Q.: Tell us about the Product / Solution. Explain how you went about the Product-Market Fit Process.
Ans: Qbera offers Instant Loans to salaried individuals with a minimum net monthly income of Rs. 20,000. Loan amounts range from Rs. 1,00,000 to Rs. 15,00,000.
Q.: What is your USP?
Ans: Qbera offers loans from Rs. 1,00,000 to Rs. 15,00,000 within 24 hours, in over 900 cities across India. Even individuals employed with uncategorized companies and those with lower-than-prime credit scores can qualify for instant loans from Qbera, thanks to Qbera’s easy-to-meet eligibility criteria, which takes a comprehensive look at a consumer’s profile to more accurately determine his/her repayment capacity.
Q.: What were your assumptions when you entered the market, learnings that you have?
Ans: The ideal customer is any customer with a minimum net monthly income of Rs. 20,000, and a CIBIL score of over 600 with no late payments in the last few months and no defaults in the last 1 year.
Q.: What has been your biggest failure as an entrepreneur and what did you learn from it??
Ans: Biggest failure was having a project I started shut down due to lack of funding. Biggest learning was that it’s incredibly hard to meet projections unless you have an impeccable team & execution capabilities – but that ultimately, it comes down to one’s ability to raise capital to give one’s self a fighting chance of success.
Q.: How are you pricing the Product? Explain your thought process.
Ans: Qbera offers personal loans at a fair and economical rate of interest to creditworthy customers. Processing charges are levied accordingly in the range between 1%-5% of the loan amount. Interest rates range from 11% p.a. to 30% p.a.
Q.: Please tell us about the investors (if any)
Ans: Qbera raised an initial capital of Rs. 3 crores. It was initially directed towards paying salaries of early team members, covering overhead costs such as rent, systems. In 2018, Qbera raised a 3 million dollars funding from E-city Ventures – the first round of funding since launching the startup.
Q.: Is there any interesting success story? If yes, please write about it. ?
Ans: The capital to lend (solved by sealing new partnerships), an NBFC license, Things that didn’t work – we’d tied up with a channel partner to give us healthy leads, but the partnership proved futile as we didn’t get the results we’d expected. Initial success was sealing a partnership with RBL Bank and getting the NBFC license.
Q.: What is the big picture of your startup? Is this Product leading to something bigger? If so, how?
Ans: Providing unsecured credit to salaried individuals in over 900 cities across India.
Q.: Since inception, give us a sense of the value of business done by your venture?
Ans: Qbera has disbursed loans worth over 115 crores since its inception, about 2 years ago.
Q.: What is the insight that you have about this market, which no one else has? Uniqueness about your Startup.
Ans: Qbera serves the underserved salaried segment in India. By using a proprietary risk-assessment algorithm, Qbera takes a more comprehensive look at consumer profiles to evaluate their repayment capacities more accurately by examining a long list of essential parameters, not merely confined to a consumer’s credit score.
Q.: List all the names of the core Team Members, along with their Designated Roles.
Ans: Sure. They are:
- Anubhav Jain – Co-founder and Head of Risk: Anubhav is a credit risk professional with a decade of experience in banking and consumer/small business lending at American Express and EXL across underwriting, acquisitions, customer management and loyalty functions. He has also founded two start-ups in the banking analytics and edtech domains. He holds an MBA degree from Indian Institute of Management and is also a visiting faculty at India’s top business and engineering schools.
- Anuj Sachdev: Co-founder and Vice President – Product: Anuj has previously founded a receivables financing platform and an inter-corporate deposit network (business-to-business unsecured lending) in India. He has also led Growth and Special Projects for Freecultr – Sequoia Capital backed lifestyle consumer internet venture and incubation of an ad receivables financing platform for SVG Media – India’s largest ad network. He holds a BBA degree from Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), Mumbai and a masters in finance from Aston Business School.
Q.: Who do You Perceive as Your Competition? How do you differentiate yourself with them?
Ans: MoneyTap and LoanTap – Qbera’s loans are more fairly priced, and Qbera’s eligibility criteria are far more relaxed, not to mean that just anybody can qualify for a personal loan from Qbera – applicants are approved based on the health of their credit profiles. Qbera is currently active in over 900 cities in India – a Fintech that boasts possible the biggest outreach in the market.
Q.: What would be your goal to accomplish in the next six months?
Ans: To expand and entrench our presence in over 900 cities across India, and increase our overall market share in the unsecured loan segment through super-fast, super-smart and super-fair personal loans, always putting the customer first.
Q.: What message do you want to convey to fellow entrepreneurs?
Ans: Biggest learning – Biggest learning was that it’s incredibly hard to meet projections unless you have an impeccable team & execution capabilities – but that ultimately, it comes down to one’s ability to raise capital to give oneself a fighting chance of success.
Thanks Aditya. Best wishes!