2017-18 has been an eventful year for us at Arohan and I am pleased to connect with you to highlight some of our key achievements.
We had a super March 2018 – with disbursements of over INR 440 Cr in a single month, the highest ever in our history as a company. We have closed the year at over INR 2150Cr portfolio outstanding, serving over 1.1 million end clients from our 435 branches in the 9 low-income states (the 2 new this year being Tripura and Uttar Pradesh) of the country manned by over 3200 employees. With this, we should be able to improve our overall ranking amongst NBFC MFI's in India while being the biggest based out of the east.
We have successfully completed the formal merger of IntelleCash into Arohan. This means that today Arohan is a unique NBFC MFI to have a separate MSME lending vertical with a business of around INR 76Cr across 4 locations in the non-qualifying assets space.
We have strengthened our senior management team significantly with Mr. Shirish Panda joining us as Head - MFI Business, Mr. Ranjan Das as the Head - Credit and Risk, Mr. Anirudh Singh Thakur as the Head - Compliance and Legal and Mr. Shailesh Kumar as the Head - IntelleCash Business. With this, our management clearly ranks as one of the strongest for an MFI of its size in India.
Our unique microfinance partnership business has crossed INR 105Cr of portfolio outstanding, working with over 9 active partners across 5 states in our LIS footprint in sourcing, collection, and a Term Loan Advance Liquidity model. We have migrated to one of the best-in-class core banking systems from FIS – Profile in July 2017, have tested for e-KYC and Tab/FIS connect applications and have deployed biometric devices to help roll out the PayTM Payments Bank tie-up.
The funding unit has raised close to INR 2000Cr of debt this year at very fine rates of around 10% and also closed the Tier II deals worth INR 150Cr in March 2018 - this has helped us lower our pricing to a fine 20.99% effective March 2018 – second lowest in the sector. Our Project Udayan continues to look, in all avenues, at raising additional capital needed for the company’s business going forward. We have a new investor in TR Capital (a secondary specialist firm from Hong Kong) who bought out about 10% from AGII and Tano Capital, together.
We held the first ever Press Meet of Arohan, as well as, a get-together announcing Arohan’s coming of age in May 2017 and had published a unique theme based annual report in August 2017. Our Corporate Social Responsibility unit continues to focus on our "Vision of touching 100,000 lives" in the medium term and this year has done a unique WASH (Water & Sanitation) project benefiting thousands of people in Sonarpur near Kolkata. Our HR and Admin teams have rolled out new initiatives like KHOJ - the field recruitment portal, an upgraded appraisal system for all employees while working on the vision to be closer to rank in the “Top 10 places to Work”.
We have worked towards upgrading policies and rolling out initiatives to bring new products/services to the field like Bazaar 2.0. Our cross-sell revenues and penetration levels have grown to relevant levels with the introduction of new products and innovative delivery models. We now have 3 tie-ups in the BC space with IndusInd Bank, IDFC and PayTM Payments Bank with over INR 180Cr limits available to grow.
Our Audit and Risk teams have worked with new tools like Predix and Prismatic to analyse and report better and faster while helping the business be alerted to any concern/improvement areas to focus on. For a better part of the year, we had to address the lingering demo impact and our various initiatives like recovery CSRs, Extraordinary Centre Meetings, legal notices, Connect-Collect-Correct (3C) project and working with the clients have helped us manage the fallout better than our peers. Our recent portfolio quality has now returned to match the pre-demo days after an initial phase of slightly higher delinquencies.
Our credit rating has been retained at A- in a challenging external environment and grading is at the top notch MF1. We have been reaffirmed with the SMART Campaign certification and others like CoCa, SPM is stable. We won the “Order of Merit” Award at the 47th SKOCH Awards for the Best IT Implementation in an NBFC MFI and also the CSR Practice of the Year Award while being recognized by IBL, AMFI etc. in various forums. We have also won the prestigious SKOCH “Order of Merit” Award for qualifying amongst Top-80 Technology Projects in India.
Finally, I want to thank all of you for your co-operation and good wishes which have helped us deliver in a challenging environment. We look forward to your continued support.
Wish you all a wonderful new financial year!
Warm RegardsManoj Kumar Nambiar, MD
RATE CUT: Arohan announces revised lending rate W.E.F March 1, 2018
Arohan Financial Services (P) Limited announced a lower lending rate of 20.99% for all its products except Premium. In effect from March 1, 2018, this change is a 21 bps cut from the present lending rate of 21.20%.
The rate revision will benefit lakhs of new customers of Arohan, over 96% of which are women from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds across the Low Income States of Eastern, Central and North Eastern India.
The revised pricing is the second-best for any NBFC-MFI in the nine states that the company operates in viz Assam, Bihar, Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Meghalaya, Odisha, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.
IntelleCash successfully merges into Arohan
On March 27, 2018, Arohan, successfully completed the formal merger of IntelleCash, the MSME lending vertical. Speaking of the achievement, Mr. Manoj Nambiar, Managing Director said, “After the due process of hearings and queries, the NCLT orders have been received in both Mumbai for IntelleCash and Kolkata for Arohan. This means that today Arohan is a unique NBFC MFI to have a vibrant Merchant Cash Advance (MCA) and MSME lending business of around INR 75Cr across 4 locations in the non-qualifying assets space.”
With this merger, Arohan now offers a wide suite of credit products serving underprivileged women, micro and small enterprises coupled with an active cross-sell, business correspondent, microfinance partnerships and MSME lending verticals.
Arohan touches 10 lakh customers, achieves key milestone
On February 1, 2018, Arohan Financial Services (P) Limited successfully crossed the landmark of serving 1 million customers. A key milestone of our 10 - 10- 10 Vision statement, this is a significant achievement.
achievement. Commenting on the achievement Mr. Manoj Nambiar, MD, Arohan said, "Of our 10 - 10 - 10 Vision, we have crossed the 10 lakh clients today, will touch the 10 states next year and hopefully will be in the top 10 places to work for, in the next 2 to 3 years’ time. I feel happy to congratulate all, especially the frontline field team ably backed by the support teams for their tireless efforts and hard work.” Mr. Shirish Panda, Head Business added, "With this achievement, I am sure we are now, indisputably, the largest NBFC-MFI based out of the east and have improved our overall ranking as well. My team is focused on crossing the INR 2000 Cr mark in portfolio outstanding by end of March 2018."
A cake cutting ceremony was organized at the Head office to mark the occasion. The presence of our five Zonal Business Heads, Mr. Joyanta Bakali, Mr. Vinod Pandey, Mr. Susanta Kumar Behera, Mr. Anirban Sinha and Mr. Bharat Singh added a silver lining to the celebrations.
Arohan’s business crosses INR 2000 Cr POS
Closing financial year 17-18 on a super note, Arohan crossed a landmark portfolio outstanding of INR 2000 Cr at INR 2150 Cr with organic disbursements of over INR 410 Cr, inorganic close to INR 15Cr and IntelleCash at INR 17.56Cr - totalling to over INR 440Cr in a single month, the highest ever in the history of the company.
As on March 31, 2018, Arohan has an INR 2150Cr portfolio outstanding, serving over 1.1 million end clients from our 435 branches in the 9 low-income states (the 2 new this year being Tripura and Uttar Pradesh) of the country manned by over 3400 employees. With this, Arohan should be able to improve its overall ranking amongst NBFC MFI's in India while being the biggest out of the east.
MD as a guest speaker for Moneycontrol’s Banking Conclave
On January 24, 2018, Mr. Manoj Nambiar, MD, attended a day-long Banking Conclave as a guest speaker. Organised jointly by Moneycontrol, Free Press Journal, and MIT World Peace University, the discussion centered around the ‘Future of Microfinance, Rural Banking, and ePayments’.
An interesting article on the discussion published by Moneycontrol states that the future of financial inclusion and ePayments lies in using the available data innovators including Aadhaar and Fintech players and integration of physical, as well as, digital experience to reach the last mile consumer. “It is the right time to be in India as there are a lot of opportunities today,” said Mr. Nambiar.
NDTV 24X7 exclusive interview with Mr Manoj Nambiar on microfinance, MUDRA and job creation
In an exclusive interaction with Monideepa Banerjie of NDTV 24X7 on microfinance, MUDRA and job creation, Mr. Manoj Nambiar, Managing Director, Arohan Financial Services Private Limited tells NDTV that Mudra has essentially reduced the rate of interest on loans. Arohan borrowed INR. 25 Cr in the first instance and INR. 50 Cr for the second time for which the rates of interest charged were the lowest. This is benefitting the customers.
Arohan participates in Sa-Dhan Microfinance Sector of NE conference
On February 22, 2018, Ms. Shraddha Srimal, Head, New Products, and Alliance Business, attended a conference in Guwahati on "Microfinance Sector of NE: Issues, Challenges and Way forward - the perspective of MFIs" as a panellist.
Organised by Sa-dhan, the event was focused on the North Eastern Zone of India, where the mainstream financial institutions have been hugely challenged but the microfinance sector is augmenting, to cater to the poor people.
Arohan launches a unique Water Sanitation Unit in West Bengal
On Saturday, March 17, 2018, Arohan Financial Services (P) Limited launched an integrated water sanitation unit in Boral, under the Rajpur-Sonarpur Municipality region adjoining Kolkata. The integrated plant, implemented by South Asian Forum for Environment (SAFE) in collaboration with the Rajpur Sonarpur Municipal authority, has the capacity to provide 10,000 litres of WHO quality purified water daily to the local community benefiting upto 500 families.
Commenting on the initiative and launch, Mr. Manoj Kumar Nambiar, Managing Director, said, “We at Arohan believe in integrating our business with the lives of our clients on the ground. The water sanitation unit is our small contribution towards amplifying the efforts of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and will benefit the local communities at large.” Sumantra Banerjee, Independent Director and Head of CSR Committee, said “Arohan has always focused on community betterment and empowerment as part of its CSR initiatives and this unit came into being after we realized that there is an immense water shortage in and around Sonarpur. We believe that this new facility will not only enable access to clean and safe drinking water along with other provisions but will also make the people in Sonarpur self-sustainable.”
The project, funded as a part of Arohan’s CSR initiatives to build eco-sustainable solutions, has the potential to provide safe drinking water in budgeted volumes, act as a sanitation unit, help in rainwater harvesting, as well as, run a biogas plant for community and street lighting from the bio-sanitation units. The announcement of the inauguration has been featured in leading regional dailies.
100 girls awarded with Arohan Shiksha Scholarship
On March 19, 2018, Arohan Financial Services (P) Limited awarded 100 girls of BDJJ Inter College Jhumra in Hazaribagh district of Jharkhand with the Arohan Shiksha Scholarship.
The girls studying in classes XI and XII belong to the neighbouring marginalised communities where many are deprived of education because of financial constraints. The candidates were selected based on their academic merit over a month-long evaluation process conducted by the Swaraj Foundation. The financial aid covers the tuition charges for a year, along with other essential expenses.
The event was graced by the presence of Shri Dev Dayal Kushwaha, former Cabinet Minister of Jharkhand and Shri Braj Kishore Jaiswal, former Chairman of the Hazaribagh Municipal Board. Mr. Manish Kumar, Regional Head, Jharkhand, Ms. Meghna Dass from the CSR Department and other representatives from Arohan, Swaraj Foundation and the college were also present and addressed the gathering. The announcement of the inauguration has been featured in leading regional dailies.
Innovative mass awareness campaigns help financial literacy
In its role of being a key financial inclusion player in India, Arohan has been effectively conducting a series of mass awareness camps to spread awareness on the importance of savings, insurance, banking, government schemes etc. while also creating awareness on digital payments and advantages of a cashless economy.
As part of its financial literacy initiatives – Pragya, Arohan launched its first Mass Awareness Campaign in early 2017 and has since reached out to beneficiaries across Odisha, West Bengal, and Bihar. It recently conducted another such campaign through magic shows. An infotainment media, the shows were performed by magician Munna Jadugar across villages in Bihar.
Sheema Saha - aged 34, is a working woman and lives in an area where access to round-the-clock safe drinking water is difficult.
With Arohan launching an integrated water sanitation unit in Boral, under the Rajpur-Sonarpur Municipality in Kolkata, she now has access to WHO quality purified water daily. The plant has the capacity to provide 10,000 litres drinking water daily to the local community benefiting upto 500 families. “It is not possible for me to wait for the municipality water supply which is time bound. This plant gives me access to safe water 24/7 and I couldn’t be happier,” says Sheema.
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