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US venture firm General Catalyst may invest in Cred in its first India bet

The company’s Series-B round is being led by existing investors including Sequoia Capital, Ribbit Capital and Yuri Milner’s Apolleto Asia.

Jul 09, 2019, 08.08 AM IST
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China’s Hillhouse Capital is the other new investor participating in this round.
US-based venture capital fund General Catalyst, an investor in global companies such as Snap, Stripe and Airbnb, is closing in on its first investment in an Indian startup.

Sources in the know said General Catalyst has held discussions with fintech firm Cred to be a part of the company's latest $120 million financing round.

The company's Series B round is being led by existing backers including Sequoia Capital, Ribbit Capital and Yuri Milner’s Apolleto Asia, according to three people in the know of the matter.

China’s Hillhouse Capital is the other new investor participating in this round. ET had first reported this in its April 15 edition.

Cred — which is the second venture from Kunal Shah, the founder of mobile recharge platform Freecharge — is likely to be valued at $400-$500 million, less than a year of launch. This will be a substantial jump from the $75 million valuation it commanded in its previous round.

“The company has finalised a set of investors who are leading the round, but they may look to expand the capital raising further,” said one of the people.

General Catalyst, which manages $3.75 billion in assets, is likely to invest a small amount, another source in the know said. ET could not establish the size of the investment from the American fund.

Shah, General Catalyst, Hillhouse and other investors did not respond to emailed queries till the time of going to press.

Cred offers a mobile application through which consumers can pay their credit card bills, in return for virtual coins that can be redeemed across merchants like coffee shops, movie theatres, among others. The company works closely with banks to innovate on its credit business as it looks to offer more to its prime credit card consumers.

“The company may create products in order to allow credit card purchases to be converted into equated monthly installments, enabling consumers to use these cards for different types of transactions,” said another person in the know.

Shah, during earlier interactions with ET, had said Cred was targeting the top layer of Indian consumers. The idea is to connect such consumers to potential businesses through targeted marketing offers.
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