PYMNTS MonitorEdge May 2024

State Bank of India Launches Web-Based Invoice Financing Solution

State Bank of India

The State Bank of India reportedly launched a web-based invoice financing solution for microbusinesses and small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs).

The new MSME Sahaj solution allows the bank’s customers to access financing against their sales invoices in less than 15 minutes, from application to disbursement, CNBC TV18 reported Monday (July 1).

The closure of the loan on the due date is also automated, according to the report.

“The launch of MSME Sahaj aims to provide the fast and most intuitive lending solution, further solidifying our position as the leading [microbusiness and SMB] lender in the country,” SBI Chairman Dinesh Khara said in the report.

In an earlier offering designed to meet the demand for working capital, Mastercard said in October that it partnered with retail intelligence platform Bizom to provide a comprehensive digital supply chain financing solution to micro retailers and distributors in India.

The collaboration aims to address the challenges faced by small retailers and distributors in the consumer packaged goods industry, including supply chain disruptions, payment issues, limited technical skills and lack of access to capital.

Mastercard and Bizom said that India is home to more than 64 million microbusinesses and SMBs, but only 14% of them have access to formal credit.

Vikas Varma, chief operating officer, South Asia, Mastercard, said at the time that the collaboration would enable businesses to “embark on a journey of digitization that helps them get online, get paid and gain access to capital.”

In August, Indian B2B Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) company Clear introduced a digital invoice financing tool called Invoice to Finance (I2F), saying it aims to simplify finance for individuals and businesses to foster financial growth and inclusivity across the nation.

The I2F platform builds upon the foundation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) network, enabling small businesses to access financing against their invoices in less than 30 minutes. It uses real-time integration with eInvoice and GST filing data, and it automates the credit processing journey.

“We recognized a significant gap in the market when it came to supply chain financing for small businesses,” Clear founder and CEO Archit Gupta said when announcing the launch of I2F. “Our automated invoice financing product is designed to bridge this gap by leveraging the power of GST data.”

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