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Earned wage access platform Refyne raises $82 mn in Series B funding round

A study reported that 81 per cent of employees face a liquidity crunch between pay cycles. Refyne aims to address that problem.

Startups | fundings

Peerzada Abrar  |  Bengaluru 

Chitresh Sharma and Apoorv Kumar, founders of Refyne
Chitresh Sharma and Apoorv Kumar, founders of Refyne

Refyne, 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. A significant contribution came in from existing international investors - QED Investors, partners of DST Global, Jigsaw VC, XYZ Capital, and RTP Global - and new investor Digital Horizon participating in the round.

Refyne, founded by Chitresh Sharma and Apoorv Kumar, has quickly become India’s premier EWA platform that partners with employers to enable their employees to access a portion of their accrued but unpaid salary any time before payday. Within just 10 months of being operational, Refyne has raised a total of $106 million. The company has pioneered EWA for the Indian workforce, establishing a stronghold as the leader for on-demand pay in the market. In less than a year, Refyne’s transacting user base has grown 68x and the platform recorded 165x increase in the number of transactions over the period, underscoring the liquidity gap being addressed by EWA.

The Series B will propel Refyne’s position as an innovative product in India’s fiercely competitive fintech space that is simplifying personal finance for the masses on a mega scale. The funds will be used for product development, expansion of the team, and to ramp up various business functions. The company 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.

“We built Refyne on the notion that everyone should be able to manage their personal finances without the threat of falling into debt traps due to liquidity shortfalls between pay cycles,” said Chitresh Sharma, CEO and co-founder, Refyne. “The Series B will help scale our business to build financial inclusivity in the workplace and eliminate predatory lending”, Chitresh”

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.

Refyne’s partner include Practo, TeamLease, CARS24, Tenon, Shadowfax, Rebel Foods, Acko, BlackBuck, Arti Group, Cafe Coffee Day, among several others.

“We believe Refyne will be the preferred partner for large employers that want to offer Earned Wage Access,” said Alex Cook, partner, Tiger Global.

Asia’s first comprehensive report on EWA and financial well-being in India by Ernst and Young, in partnership with Refyne, noted that 81 per cent employees face liquidity crunch between pay cycles. EWA can help the workforce bridge this gap and manage their monthly finances, resulting in positive relationships between employers and employees and improved productivity. This is reiterated by the fact that close to 60 per cent of employees said they would consider EWA as a deciding factor for their next job.

The report also noted employers who implemented EWA observed a significant drop in attrition, faster talent acquisition, enhanced workforce productivity, and improved eNPS.

Refyne is a zero-cost and risk-free solution for organisations and integrates seamlessly with any existing Human Resource Management System and Enterprise Resource Planning service. The company has also developed a proprietary Vendor Management System and Attendance Manage System that allows large enterprises to seamlessly scale EWA for their on-roll and off-roll employees.

Earned Wage Access is a progressive concept designed as a financial wellbeing solution for employees. It enables employees to track and withdraw their real-time earned pay instantly, without disrupting payroll. EWA is not a loan, therefore Refyne does not charge any interest or processing fees and relieves employees from the pressure of repayment.

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First Published: Wed, January 12 2022. 13:06 IST