BY ET BUREAU
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Financial technology firm Artoo has partnered with Annapurna Microfinance to help improve the efficiency of its loan processing.
The lending firm will use Artoo’s Intelligent Digital Loan Origination System, which would help it reduce the amount of time taken to approve loans. Annapurna Microfinance has a strong presence in rural, sub-urban and tribal communities in the states of Rajasthan, Orissa, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Jharkhand, Assam, Meghalaya and Tripura.
Artoo’s digital platform will be deployed by Annapurna Microfinance in five branches of Orissa, followed by Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh in the later weeks and scale to 15 branches by July. Annapurna expects to disburse loans worth INR 100 Crores by the end of 12 months.
Dibyajyoti Pattnaik, director, Annapurna Microfinance said, “We were searching for a product that would enable us to make our processes more efficient, less manual, make interventions more technological and minimize the subjectivity involved in loan appraisals. The evolving market required us to update our processes, to enable quick and easy credit to the underserved population. To this end, we have leveraged Artoo’s expertise in digitization of MSME lending. This has helped us to expand our reach and lend to the last mile effectively.”
It also plans to enter the individual lending segment, aimed at borrowers with higher repayment capabilities. Beginning with microenterprise loans (ranging from Rs 50,000 to Rs 10,00,000), it plans to enter micro-housing loans in the future.
Using the Artoo platform will enable field officers make loan decisions at the customer’s doorstep, thereby reducing the loan approval and turn-around time significantly. This will help Annapurna Microfinance to reach out to more customers in remote areas in a shorter time.
It plans to increase the loan ceiling for this segment of borrowers from Rs 50,000 to Rs 3,00,000. This is because the platform captures a wide range of notional data to perform a holistic credit assessment at the doorstep of the borrower, and therefore reducing the risk associated with high-value loans.
It allows the lender to minimize human error at all levels and eliminate individual bias. In addition, borrowers will know about their loan approval status on the field, thus establishing trust and transparency in the process.