Refyne, which says it is India’s first and largest earned wage access (EWA) platform, has announced the closing of its $82 million Series B round led by Tiger Global, with significant contribution from existing international investors – QED Investors, partners of DST Global, Jigsaw VC, XYZ Capital, and RTP Global – and new investor Digital Horizon.
Earned Wage Access (EWA), also known as on-demand pay, enables employees to access a portion of their accumulated wages, ahead of their payday, with the remaining being paid on the regular salary day. For example, an employee earning Rs 30,000 a month can access Rs 10,000 in the middle of the month for an unforeseen expense and get the remaining salary at the end of the month.
The concept is to help Indians who may face a liquidity crunch get access to their own earned income between pay cycles so that they do not have to depend on loans at high interest costs.
Founded by Chitresh Sharma and Apoorv Kumar, Refyne has partnered with more than 150 organizations, catering to over 700,000 employees. It expects to reach more than 3 million employees in 12 months. Refyne’s partner companies include Practo, TeamLease, CARS24, Tenon, Shadowfax, Rebel Foods, Acko, BlackBuck, Arti Group, Cafe Coffee Day, among several others.
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While the startup did not disclose the exact valuation post the funding round, co-founder and CEO Chitresh Sharma said that the valuation has grown by 6.5 times from the valuation during the Series A round.
Within just 10 months of being operational, Refyne has raised a total of $106 million. The jump in valuation and the large funding round are reflective of the unprecedented investor interest witnessed by startups in India over the past year.
Alex Cook, Partner, Tiger Global, said, “We believe Refyne will be the preferred partner for large employers that want to offer EWA. We are excited to support Chitresh, Apoorv and the Refyne team, as they work to improve financial wellness for the Indian workforce.”
Refyne’s angel investors and advisors include Indian fintech veterans Susir Kumar, founder of Intelenet; Bobby Mehta, chairman of Jones Lang Lasalle’s board, former head of TransUnion and Allstate Corp; and private global venture capital investor and entrepreneur Oliver Jung.
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