After his first successful startup FreeCharge, Kunal Shah sold it in 2015. Kunal used a lot of his time in travelling and analyzing advanced countries. The one thing that stood out was the system and way of working, which involves a high level of trust in individuals.
It is usual in advanced countries to see petrol pumps and gas stations with no assistants and supermarkets having self-checkout boards with no cashiers. That drove him to understand the benefits of – “a frictionless environment – an environment that produces financial development for its citizens” – that people believe in that system.
People trust the system in developed nations because the system consistently rewards and recognize good, trustworthy individuals. But In India, responsible people generally kept paying the price for the actions of others.
Around 30 hidden charges and excessive interest costs bother you even if you pay a single rupee less than your entire invoice. The current model thrives on you making an error. It wants you to be on the faulters list. The system has taken the good fellows for granted for far too long. Creditworthy people deserve better.
And that is what CRED is all about. In Kunal words:
“I felt the need to create a system that rewards trustworthy and creditworthy individuals of India and inspires others to be like them.”
CRED, therefore, is a community where members will be celebrated and rewarded for paying their credit card bills. According to Kunal, the goal is to help members discover ways to reduce cost, get better rates on loans, insurance, and investments, and “literally everything money.”
Cred Bought HipBar To Enters Wallet Payment Business
HipBar is India’s first drinks app. Established by industry insiders with a vision to help India drink wiser, HipBar’s story started in 2015 and now unites brands, retailers, and consumers like never before. The HipBar app strives to create a responsible digital ecosystem for the world’s favourite vice by running a smart, age-verified distribution model with compliance and responsibility at its core.
Cred, a credit card bill payments platform, made a way in the wallet payments business by acquiring alcohol delivery startup HipBar Pvt. Ltd, which owns a prepaid payment instrument (PPI) licence, three people aware of the development said. The PPI licence, granted by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), permits companies to operate payments systems such as digital wallets, prepaid transit cards, vouchers, etc. The RBI website lists 37 entities that hold this licence as of this month. HipBar was granted the licence in August 2016.
As per the filings with the Registrar of Companies, Cred founder Kunal Shah and his brother Rohan Shah Naresh joined HipBar as directors on October 12. Only one of the erstwhile HipBar founders— Prasanna Natarajan is still a director.
However, one of the three people cited above stated Cred acquired the payments business of HipBar. Consequently, about 10-15 people from HipBar will join Cred, the person said, requesting anonymity.
Cred Acquires Parfait for Broader Fintech Play
Through Newtap Technologies Pvt. Ltd., Shah has acquired Parfait Finance & Investment, seeming at a more expansive fintech play for Cred with lending. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has confirmed the acquisition; people briefed on the matter said.
“Cred (Dreamplug Technologies Pvt. Ltd.) has not applied to acquire an NBFC. Newtap Technologies Pvt. Ltd, in which Kunal Shah has invested in a personal capacity, has applied to the RBI for approval to acquire a stake in Parfait Finance & Investments Pvt. Ltd.,” the company stated.
CRED Acquired Happay in Cash and Stock Deal
CRED on December 1 announced that it will acquire Happay in a cash and stock deal, valuing the company expense management platform up to $180 million.
This is the newest in a series of deals done by Kunal Shah-founded CRED, which started out as an app to make credit card repayments. The fintech platform is expanding its ambitions and growing inorganically using the vast investment rounds it has raised over the years.
“With professional expenses forming a significant portion of credit card spends, bringing professional expense management into the CRED ecosystem is a natural extension of our proposition,” Shah said.
Attaching that Happay’s “product strength, customer experience and vision align with our intent at CRED to reward responsible financial behaviour and we’re excited to partner them in their journey towards leading the category,” Shah stated.
Apart from these, CRED is in talks to acquire Dineout and Wint Wealth. The two acquisition discussions drop notable light on the strategy of CRED, one of India’s hottest but least understood internet startups by many. On September 29, Cred announced investing INR 6.7B in CredAvenue.