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Caspian Debt on Friday said it has received an investment of USD 20 million (over Rs 150 crore) by US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) as long-term debt.

“The new facility, which is a combination of subordinated and senior debt will support Caspian Debt in providing customised, collateral-free loans digitally to professionally managed enterprises operating in high impact sectors in India,” a statement said.

These sectors include microfinance, SME finance, affordable housing, affordable healthcare, sustainable agribusiness and education, it added.

Caspian Debt primarily works with first-generation social entrepreneurs, who find it difficult to raise working capital as they run new-age businesses with an asset light model, and have no collateral to offer. The statement noted that many of these companies are well capitalised and are growing rapidly but require more responsive lenders.

Caspian Debt said with this facility, it is also committed to contributing 33 per cent of its investments to women-centric businesses and fulfilling its commitment to DFC’s 2X Women’s Initiative.

2X has catalysed over USD 2 billion of private sector investment in businesses and funds owned by, led by, or providing a product or service that intentionally empowers women in the developing world.

“Caspian Debt has lent over USD 219 million to over 140 early-stage enterprises contributing to 13 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) over the last seven years. We are delighted to deepen our relationship with DFC, as our partnership continues to provide much needed firepower to support under-served emerging enterprises and women-centric businesses,” Caspian Debt founder and MD S Viswanatha Prasad said.

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The funding will focus on promoting disruptive entrepreneurs, who are pushing the envelope for creating sustainable impact, he added. PTI SR

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