Backed by elite private equity firms such as Blackstone and giants such as ICICI and BPCL, Fino is in a competitive, but lucrative market segment. With an array of services, the company is on track towards growth and profitability.
Fino PayTech was set up in 2006 and offers financial product design and implementation solutions for banks, microfinance institutions (MFIs), insurance companies, Government entities, and consultants across India. The company has formed a payments bank and targets the under-served rural and semi-urban population.
Its products include :
- Fino Tijori, a bio-metric smartcard-based, no-frills savings account product that enables banks to offer financial products such as loans, remittance, and insurance to their customers by issuing multi-application smart cards.
- Fino Saral, an end-to-end loan management solution that enables each branch of the bank to reach out to a large number of loan applicants and process the loan applications.
- Fino Tatkaal, which provides a technology platform and processing capabilities for remittance transactions.
- Fino Parichay, a smart-chip card that establishes an individual's identity.
- Fino Sure, a micro-insurance solution that provides a technology platform and processing capabilities for insurance businesses.
- Fino Plus, an end-to-end deposits management solution.
- Fino Mitra, which provides mobile banking, mobile e-wallet, and m-commerce for end users as well as mobile based enrollment and mobile-based Point of Transaction for agents.
With over 400 branches and an employee strength of 4000, Fino Payments Bank has begun operations in four states namely Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and Bihar. With a ready customer-base of 100 million, it is rapidly expanding its services.
- The company has invested in Indian fin-tech firm , however financial terms of the deal were not revealed. Under the partnership, the two parties will develop a new payments ecosystem. Fino will serve as the issuance and settlement institution of the prepaid payment tool. The aim is to support India’s public transport payment and retail payments through co-branded Fino and CityCash cards. The alliance will leverage CityCash’s NFC-based cashless payments and micro-payment merchant acquisition technology.
- The company is in talks with Temasek and Credit Saison to sell stake at a total deal size of Rs 1,200 Cr of which Rs 300 Cr will go towards infusion of primary capital in the firm while the remaining amount will be used towards providing exits to existing private equity investors which include Blackstone, Intel Capital and Headland Capital. IFC Capital is another existing investor but is undecided whether it will also sell its stake in the coming round.
- In October 2018, the RBI lifted its five-month ban on adding new customers to Fino Payments Bank. The ban had been in place on account of violations of certain licensing conditions and operating guidelines.
- The bank is planning to open 150 branches in 2019, with a majority of them likely to come at BPCL outlets, FINO currently operates 425 branches and 100 single-person branches at BPCL fuel outlets.
- It is adding newer states like Odisha, Bengal, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana to its network, which will increase the number of cities covered and has already risen to 80 from 35 since July 2017.
- The bank aims to become the largest distributor of financial services in the mass market, it noted that its insurance sales for ICICI and other companies have grown four times in the past three months alone.
- The bank has also received a go-ahead from RBI to tie up with universal banks to take care of deposits of over Rs 1 lakh, which will automatically go in as a savings or current account deposit.
Understanding Payment Banks
Despite several state-owned, private, foreign, cooperative, regional, and rural banks establishing themselves in India, the RBI felt the need for two new categories: payment banks and small finance banks.
Payment banks are allowed to accept deposits, sell investments & insurance products, remit money, issue debit cards and provide internet banking facilities.
The category was introduced to promote financial inclusion in a country where 40% of the population does not have access to formal banking services yet. Among the remaining 60%, several still don’t use formal lending services for several reasons such as the branches being too far away (causing many customers to lose a day’s wage to travel) or products being too complicated for them to understand.