Nilekani invests in Power2SME firm

Bengaluru, Jan 26 (IANS) Infosys co-founder and former UIDAI chairman Nandan Nilekani has invested an unspecified amount in Power2SME firm to fund the needs of the burgeoning small and medium enterprises (SMEs) sector.

“As a strategic investor, Nilekani’s investment will enable us to empower SMEs for sourcing their needs, including funds to spur the sector’s growth,” Power2SME founder and chief executive R. Narayan said in a statement on Tuesday.

The Gurgaon-based company enables SMEs to focus on core business to drive growth and expansion by sourcing raw materials at competitive price points across multiple products in diverse categories.

Raw materials include chemicals, additives, inks, paints, metals and polymers.

“Indian SMEs act as an engine for growth and are critical to making India a manufacturing hub. Power2SME’s business model focuses on making small enterprises bankable and profitable,” Nilekani said.

The company has also worked with about 30,000 SMEs across the country since its inception in 2012 to meet their needs for procuring raw materials at competitive and secure funds from financial institutions for working capital.

“To have Nilekani as our strategic investor and receive his support for our vision to make SMEs bankable is an advantage as it is important to foster the sector to create jobs,” Narayan said.

The company is also building an ecosystem to enable SMEs procure raw materials and source funds for their growth and expansion.

The company’s institutional investors Accel Partners, Kalaari Capital and Inventus Capital also participated in the fourth (series D) round of funding.

“To break-even next fiscal (2016-17), we will broaden our product portfolio and strengthen vendor ties to engage with our SME clients by holding camps across the country and through our mobile app offering,” Narayan added.

According to the company’s survey, as raw materials account for about 70 percent of monthly recurring cost, SMEs find it difficult to access right quality at right price in an unstructured market.

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