CRED in Talks to Raise $300 Million at a Valuation of Over $6 Billion

CRED, a fintech startup based in India, is in talks to raise $300 million, valuing it at over $6 billion, according to sources. This is a combative valuation for one of India's most captivating technology companies, as investor sentiment remains strong despite global tech stock declines. According to sources, the new round of funding will be led by a Middle Eastern crossover fund, with existing backers Tiger Global Management and Falcon Edge Capital also increasing their stakes.

CRED was launched in 2018 by serial entrepreneur Kunal Shah to help India's most credit worthy individuals pay their credit card bills and earn points. Since then, it has expanded into lending, e-Commerce payments, brand advertising, and providing short term credit through BNPL options.

CRED is also ramping-up its commerce play by onboarding multiple online only consumer brands on its platform

CRED has built a loan book of over Rs. 2000 crore in the last one & half years, with low defaults likely due to the fact that it caters to highly credit worthy customers. CRED Pay, the company's payments division, handles transactions worth $500 million per year in GMV, which it doesn't yet profit from.

CRED is also attempting to persuade investors that it can emulate Affirm, a US-based company that allows BNPL to conduct online transactions. Affirm recently went public, with a market capitalization of more than $24 billion.

When CRED raised $251 million from existing investors in October of last year, it was valued at $4 billion. CRED was also in talks to buy two startups, Dineout and Wint Wealth, in November of last year, as it sought to expand its services to its 7.5 million users. With Dineout Passport, the Times Internet owned Dineout helps users discover restaurants and offers discounts & complimentary dishes, while Wint Wealth is an alternative investment platform that offers users better stable returns than a fixed deposit but less than the stock market.

CRED is also ramping-up its commerce play by on-boarding multiple online only consumer brands on its platform, according to Kunal, who is one of India's most well known new age entrepreneurs and a prolific angel investor. It recently launched a zero commission CRED store onboarding platform, which exempts all brand partners from listing fees and commissions from any sale.

While CRED has quickly expanded into payments, lending, investment, and commerce, it is unclear how it will cross sell, upsell, and monetize each of these engines. In a recent tweet, Kunal seemed to imply that CRED should be viewed as a super app, built in the style of a web series, with one character introduced at a time and a connection to previous characters. He said, "Many companies that are trying to become super apps from the word go are becoming like a buffet at a rich wedding, where you don't understand 90 percent of dishes".