Eko Financial Services – an extra-ordinary story of financial inclusion

Eko India Financial Services Pvt Ltd is targeting unbanked rural and urban population. I heard about it first, during the visit of Bill Gates a couple of years ago. I read about it and was impressed with what they are trying to do. Founded by a BIT, Mesra alum, Abhishek Sinha, it tied up with SBI to provide mini savings account to its customers. If you go through its presentation below, you’ll be amazed at the way they have used ubiquitous mobile phone for extending the reach. In late 2009 and into 2010, Eko has begun to grow substantially rising to nearly 50,000 clients by March 2010 a ten fold increase over the quarter.

Now it has more partners, ICICI Bank and Bhart AXA Life. They have 900 centers currently and plan on increasing it to 20,000 more points by end of 2011. Their funding history:

  1. 2007 – $0.5 million by friends and families
  2. March 2009 – Grant funding of $1.78 million from CGAP Technology Program which is housed within the World Bank and co-funded by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
  3. Sep 30, 2010; Dec 31, 2010 and April 30, 2011 – Unknown from Colorado’s 4B Capital Fund A for 30% stake

Reference:
CGAP – supported Eko.

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About prasoonk

Prasoon Kumar grew up in the Bokaro Steel City of south Bihar, now Jharkhand. He studied Computer Science and Engineering in IIT Kanpur. For job he moved to the land of opportunity, United States. He was there in the bay area through the internet revolution of mid to late nineties. He spent time admiring the beautiful coastline of California among other things. He moved east coast to the New York after the turn of the millennium working in a brokerage startup. Afterwards, he is back to India for good. He has been working in the enterprises and internet startup, enjoying the city life. He has a beautiful wife, a young 5 years old daughter and 11 years old son.

Posted on December 19, 2010, in Bihar, India and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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