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MSME lender U GRO Capital raises $30 million through NCDs from Dutch development bank FMO

MSME-focused non-banking financial company (NBFC) U GRO Capital has raised $30 million (around Rs 250 crore) through Non-Convertible Debentures (NCDs) from Dutch entrepreneurial development bank FMO, the company announced on Tuesday. The INR-denominated NCDs issuance was fully subscribed by FMO.  

Shachindra Nath, Founder and Managing Director, U GRO Capital, said, “We share a common vision of financial inclusion with impact funding organizations and are excited to collaborate with FMO to meet the diverse financial needs of India’s underserved MSMEs. Impact investors are critical funding partners in enabling us to bridge India’s massive credit gap in the MSME sector.” 

Over the past five years, U GRO Capital said it has provided credit to more than 80,000 small businesses. Earlier this year, the Investment Fund for Developing Countries (IFU), a Danish development finance institution providing risk capital for private sector investments in developing and emerging markets, had around Rs 240 crore in U GRO Capital.

In April, the company had launched its GRO X app for micro and small merchants to get collateral-free instant working capital loans through unified payments interface (UPI). 

Aleksandra Gazy, Senior Investment Officer, FMO said, “MSME Finance is a key driver for financial inclusion, and U GRO Capital’s mission to solve the small business credit need is in line with our vision of promoting inclusive and sustainable prosperity. We are confident that together we will positively impact the lives of MSME borrowers.” 

As an impact investor, FMO focuses on three sectors with a high development impact, agribusiness, food & water, energy, and financial institutions. With a total committed portfolio of around EUR 12 billion across over 85 countries, FMO is among larger bilateral private sector development banks globally. 

The MSME sector in October this year had received Rs 23.15 lakh crore in priority sector lending from scheduled commercial banks, according to the latest data on sectoral deployment by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). This was 22.8 per cent higher than Rs 18.8 lakh crore deployed in October last year and 11.8 per cent more than Rs 20.6 lakh crore deployed in September this year.