HomeBankAye Finance Secures £200,000 In Grant from TRANSFORM to Boost Working Capital for Kirana Owners

Aye Finance Secures £200,000 In Grant from TRANSFORM to Boost Working Capital for Kirana Owners

Partnership with TRANSFORM initiative led by Unilever, UK's Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office, and EY to expand Aye Finance's SwitchPe product and address funding challenges in the FMCG supply chain for grocery store owners.



Aye Finance, India’s leading provider of unsecured small-ticket business loans to the credit-starved micro-enterprise segment, has announced the receipt of a £200,000 (INR 2.05 Cr) grant from TRANSFORM, a joint initiative led by Unilever, the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, and EY.

The grant aims to tackle Kirana store owners’ working capital challenges.

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Last month, Aye Finance launched its new on-tap product, SwitchPe, designed to offer credit lines to retailers for procuring supplies. Through the partnership with TRANSFORM, Aye Finance will leverage Unilever’s extensive expertise, one of the initiative’s founding organizations. This will extend SwitchPe availability to a larger number of grocery store owners, particularly women, and incorporate them into the organized lending framework.

TRANSFORM brings together corporations, donors, investors, and academics to support innovative impact enterprises. By collaborating, they test and scale innovative solutions that address environmental challenges, enhance health and well-being, and foster inclusive economies, ultimately benefiting low-income households.

Led by Unilever, the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office, and EY, TRANSFORM provides grant funding, business insight, and additional resources to entrepreneurs while conducting in-depth research. Established in 2015, the initiative has already supported over 100 projects in 17 countries and is expanding its impact by partnering with new organizations across Africa, Asia, and beyond. Aye Finance is thrilled to join this community of changemakers.

Speaking about the development, Sanjay Sharma, Founder & Managing Director of Aye Finance, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership, stating, “Aye was founded with a commitment to deliver quality financial services to the MSME Sector, and in our mission, we have found tremendous support from partners who share our dedication to improving financial inclusion for underserved segments. With this collaboration with TRANSFORM, we will build momentum for our newly launched BNPL product, SwitchPe, and address funding challenges in the FMCG supply chain.”

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Kirana stores play a crucial role in India’s retail sector, contributing approximately 88 percent to GDP. However, due to insufficient working capital, these stores often operate at a small scale. Aye Finance, since its inception, has provided micro-entrepreneurs, including grocery store owners, with access to affordable and customized lines of credit. The company has supported over 600,000 micro-enterprises, including 50,000 Kirana shops, through its tailored lending products.

The TRANSFORM grant will bolster Aye Finance’s efforts to empower Kirana owners by providing them with the necessary working capital to expand their operations. By combining the expertise and resources of TRANSFORM’s partners, Aye Finance aims to bridge the funding gap in the FMCG supply chain and drive economic growth for this vital segment of India’s economy.

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Krishna Mali
Krishna Mali
Founder & Group Editor of TechGraph.

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