Annapurna Finance raises $15mn from Proparco in Series A2 Funding

The business announced that it would put the money to use by expanding regionally, investing in technology, and pursuing its goal of enabling financial inclusion at scale.

On Friday, Annapurna Finance announced that Proparco had contributed $15 million to its Series A2 fundraising round. The private funding division of the French government’s Agence Française de Développement Group is called Proparco (AFD Group).

The entire investment round size will reach $100 million after this fundraising effort. After securing investments totaling USD 30 million from Nuveen Global Impact Fund in March 2021, USD 20 million from DEG in November 2021, and USD 35 million from Encourage Funds, Accion, and current investor Oikocredit, Annapurna has raised capital four times in the past 15 months.

The Bhubaneshwar-based business said it will utilise the money to expand regionally, increase its loan book, invest in technology, and further its goal of enabling financial inclusion at-scale.

“With a pan India rural distribution network and a multi-product strategy, it offers micro-credit loans, home improvement, and MSME loans to individuals and small businesses. The fundraise will help Annapurna in strengthening its tech stack to bring in more efficient, automated and paperless financial products to the unbanked and underbanked,” the company said in its statement.

Gobinda Chandra and Dibyajyoti Pattanaik founded Annapurna in 2009, and they claim that their AUM has surpassed INR 6,500 crore. With more than 980 branches across the nation, it is present in 20 states and is constantly growing.

“We are thrilled to have our existing debt partner Proparco further support us and now partner with us on the equity side. Their belief in our ability to enable financial inclusion across the country and empower women has fortified our commitment to building one of India’s largest financial services companies. We continue to invest heavily in our tech capabilities and operations to further boost the financial inclusion objectives of Annapurna over the next decade and strive to take it towards our larger banking ambitions,” said Gobinda Chandra Pattanaik, managing director, Annapurna Finance.

According to Diane Jegam, regional director for South Asia at Proparco, “It gives us immense pleasure to back the founders who have meticulously, thoughtfully, and consistently built Annapurna with a strong yet nimble business model that has focused on making financial services and products available to financially excluded people, especially women in rural areas of India.”