By Vikash Kumar Photography
Janalakshmi, a microfinance institution headquartered in Bangalore, announced that it had closed its Series D primary equity raise of INR 3.25 billion. In addition, secondary transactions aggregating INR 0.25 billion provided a complete exit for Lok Capital and the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, both of whom were early stage Series A investors.
This is the largest transaction in Indian microfinance since the 2010 Andhra crisis.
Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia (MSPEA) led the transaction and Tata Capital Growth Fund and QRG Enterprises, the promoter holding company of Havells India, also participated in the round. Existing investors – Citi Venture Capital (CVCI Private Equity), India Financial Inclusion Fund and Vallabh Bhanshali – also participated.
Edelweiss Financial Services Limited and Unitus Capital jointly advised the Company on this transaction.
Janalakshmi (literal translation, ‘People’s Wealth’) focuses on urban Indian microfinance and on comprehensive financial inclusion, which extends beyond group credit. Moreover, it’s entire promoter stake is held in a not-for-profit Section 25 company, Jana Urban Foundation, which focuses on addressing larger issues related to urban inclusion.
Speaking on this transaction, V. S. Radhakrishnan, MD & CEO, Janalakshmi, remarked “We are delighted to have raised these funds from both new large investors and existing investors. This is a validation of our business model that we have pursued over the last several years.”
Akhil Awasthi, Managing Partner, Tata Capital Growth Fund, said, “We believe that investment for growth and financial inclusion are closely interlinked and these are both key priorities for the country today. We are therefore delighted to partner with Janalakshmi, a pre-eminent institution engaged in economic welfare of the lower strata of the society”
Viswanatha Prasad, CEO of Caspian Advisors, which advises the India Financial Inclusion Fund said, “The comprehensive product suite of Janalakshmi, coupled with the relentless focus on technology has truly distinguished Janalakshmi as a pioneer in Indian microfinance. We are proud to be early investors in Janalakshmi and believe that the best is yet to come”