With the travel industry recovering faster than expected and travel e-commerce taking centre stage due to revenge tourism, Gurgram-based revolutionary travel fintech SanKash seeks to raise $2 million to fund its business expansion, digitisation, and adding new products to its portfolio.
As part of the US-based Newchip accelerator to raise funds from the west, SanKash is also in conversation with some marquee VC firms based in India. With the participation of a few family offices and existing investors, the platform is at the advanced stage of discussion and calibration and plans to close the round in the next few months.
SanKash is currently the only lending player to almost all offline key accounts like Thomas Cook, SOTC, Balmer Lawrie, Kesari, Veena World, etc along with 2500+ other regional and small players. To ramp up its volume of lending, it needs to digitise its processes. The fintech platform plans to utilise the funds for digitising customer acquisition & decision procedures on the checkout pages of its travel partners.
Travel Boutique Online (TBO), a strategic investor in SanKash and the country’s largest travel aggregator, takes SanKash services to enable its 30,000+ active travel agents across geography to offer flexible payments to their customers. The fintech platform plans to use the funds for business expansion to garner market share at regional and small players by deploying people and rolling out B2B marketing interventions to support the TBO sales team at the local level.
SanKash also plans to use some part of the funds to scale its newly launched products like insurance and payments to leverage a prominent travel agent base and travellers. The platform launched its insurance services with Policy bazaar and ICICI Lombard in September with a vision to become an integrated financial services provider to a large travel merchant base. Having already generated a remarkable initial response from the agents, SanKash plans to proliferate its insurance income by 10x in the next 6 months.
Further, considering the struggle of travel agents in integrating or negotiating payment gateway and relying on cash or bank transfer to collect money from their customers 90% of the time, SanKash teamed up with Razor Pay in September ’21 to offer payment gateway services to the agent network. 500+ travel agents have signed up for this service since then. The travel fintech platform is also planning to introduce other benefits like a close-loop card with GMR Group to promote duty-free shopping among the travellers, besides exploring travel ecommerce options.
Sharing his insights on his growth plans, Akash Dahiya, Founder of SanKash said, “SanKash went live in the market in 2018, and since then, we have processed almost INR 100 Crore of travel value. But due to the pandemic, the travelling market went on a brief hiatus for almost six months this year. With the tourism and travelling industry resuming faster than expected, we are witnessing a 3X surge in the number of applications compared to pre-COVID levels. Our target is to recover the revenue we lost, process 50% of our lifetime volume in the next 6 months and take the existing travel merchant base of 1500 to 5000+ merchants by April 2022. The latest infusion of funds will help us support this growth and ramp up the pent-up demand business expansion.”
With a recent bridge round of USD 150,000 from the family office of Bestech group to support growth and now ready for a larger round, SanKash has already raised half a million USD in seed round and as founders’ equity. The funding round was participated by angel investors like Rishi Kajaria (Kajaria Group), Ashwath & Akshay Kapur (Atlas Group) along with Travel Boutique Online (TBO) and Vinamra Shastri.
Categories: Venture Capital