Indian fintech Slice raises $220 million, hits 'unicorn' status

Indian fintech company Slice announces that it has raised $220 million in a Series-B funding round, November 29, 2021. (Photo: AP)

Indian fintech company Slice said on Monday it had raised $220 million in a Series-B funding round led by investment giant Tiger Global and private equity firm Insight Partners that valued the company at more than $1 billion.

New and existing investors, including private equity firm Advent International's affiliate Sunley House Capital, investment firm Moore Strategic Ventures, Japan's Gunosy Capital and India's Blume Ventures, also participated in the round, Slice said.

"A large part of the capital will not be used for burning but it'll be used for scaling (up)," Rajan Bajaj, the company's founder and CEO, told Reuters in an interview.

Slice, which has about 600 employees, will also use the new funds to step up hiring for skills including engineering, design and data science, and add new consumer products, he said.

Slice currently offers a credit card targeted at India's young people. Signing up and applying for the card is completely digital – via its app on Google's Android play store and Apple's app store.

Allowing users to split their bill into three interest-free monthly installments is among the Slice card's key features.

The company currently has 5 million registered users on its app, Bajaj said.

Slice is also gearing up to launch payments on India's Unified Payments Interface (UPI), a state-backed system which simplifies inter-bank money transfers and merchant payments, Bajaj said.

"What we are doing for cards today we are also going to do for consumer payments. We are launching our UPI product next," Bajaj said without giving a timeline.

China's Ant Group-backed fintech Paytm, Google and Walmart's PhonePe are currently among the top players in India offering UPI-based payments.

Bajaj, an engineering graduate, founded the Bengaluru-based startup in 2016.