Accion Venture Lab, a seed-stage investment initiative, is reportedly, adding $33 million to its initial capital pool, with launch of a new $23 million (approx INR 164 crore) fund, and an additional, separate $10 million (approx INR 71 crore) investment from Accion.
The infusion was announced by Accion, a non profit firm that supports microfinance institutions globally.
According to source, the new fund comes from a group of third-party impact and commercial investors.
“There is strong potential for inclusive fintech startups to reach historically underserved communities while generating returns, and the oversubscription of the Accion Venture Lab fund is great validation of our early work investing in more than 40 innovative businesses operating in 30 markets. This new pool of capital enables us to scale our efforts and remain at the forefront of seed stage investing in inclusive fintech,” Vikas Raj, managing director at Venture Lab, said.
Launched in 2012 with $10 million in capital, Accion Venture Lab invests in fintech startups at the seed stage. The Venture Lab portfolio focuses on the fintech space that offers the potential to reach underserved communities.
Today, those include insurtech, agricultural finance, digital lending, holistic MSME finance solutions, and personal financial management.
“Despite progress, three billion people still have no safe or simple way to save money, get a loan to build a business, pay a bill, or protect their health and property with insurance,” said Michael Schlein, President and CEO of Accion.
“Fintech startups are finding new ways to provide products and services that help these underserved people. Yet, startups lack the capital and strategic support they need to grow and scale their impact. Accion Venture Lab addresses this need,” he added.
Venture Lab also partners with philanthropic organisations whose support enables it to provide specialised and extensive strategic and operational support to its portfolio companies and to invest at the higher-risk pre-seed stage in pursuit of its mission to reach the underserved.