Two wheeler financing firm bike bazaar raises ₹170 cr in equity-funding

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Two-wheeler financing firm Bike Bazaar raises ₹170 cr in equity funding

Bike Bazaar, a two-wheeler financing platform, has raised Rs 170 crore ($21.3 million) in a new funding round led by Women’s World Banking Asset Management (WAM). Existing investors Elevar Equity and Faering Capital also participated in the round.

Women’s World Banking Asset Management (WAM) spearheaded the round with Rs 75 crore while Light Travels and Elevar Equity pumped in Rs 60 crore and Rs 4 crore respectively, according to the company’s regulatory filings with the Registrar of Companies (RoC).

AMP Fitness, ECO power and others have collectively put in Rs 31 crore.

Founded in 2017 by Srinivas Kantheti and Karunakaran Vadakkepat, Bike Bazaar provides financing services to customers looking to buy a two-wheeler. The platform also facilitates loans for used two-wheelers and electric two-wheelers and as per its website, the company has financed over 300,000 to date.

Besides financing, Bike Bazaar also has a marketplace for selling and buying two-wheelers. The company plans to use the fresh funds to scale this marketplace and aims to expand its presence in rural markets, as per filings.

The company has raised Rs 400 crore ($50 million) to date.  the company has been valued at around $90 million.

The new funding comes months after reports that the parent entity WheelsEMI was looking to raise $35-$40 million from a series C round to expand its finance-focused model to the marketplace. The company then also rebranded itself from WheelsEMI to Bike Bazaar to suggest a broader portfolio.

Bike Bazaar is looking to tap into India’s flourishing used two-wheeler market. Startups such as Cars24, Droom and CredR are already competing in the space.

BankBazaar is yet to file its financial statement for FY22 but its income from operations soared 66% to Rs 84.4 crore in FY21, as per its annual financial statement filed with the RoC. Meanwhile, its losses shot up 22% to Rs 47 crore during the fiscal year ended March 2021.

The two-wheeler financing segment is a fiercely competitive space, but the sheer size of the category at almost 20 million vehicles means that the potential opportunities will always remain huge. The EV boom unfolding here has also opened up opportunities for specialised players. Interest rates are typically higher, and loan tenures are shorter with most loans never crossing 3 years. But risks are also higher, thanks to the younger profile of buyers and other factors. So a systemic risk within a firm in risk assessment can frequently lead to massive slip-ups too.

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