KiVi provides digital solutions and a phygital platform allowing the farmer to source inputs, access credit, implement agronomic practices, process and market production. Founder and CEO Joby asserted that KiVi is a one-of-a-kind technology platform designed for farming as a business enterprise and will enable farmers to access services such as agronomy, inputs, buyer aggregation, financial services, logistics, quality management, risk management and warehousing. , among others.
Agri-fintech start-up Kisan Vikas (KiVi, operated by Agrosperity Tech Solutions and an incubator at IIT Madras Research Park) has announced the launch of agricultural loans on its platform that allows smallholders to access fast credit , affordable and structured with credit institutions.
KiVi was founded by Joby CO with over two decades of experience in rural credit and agribusiness. Co-founders include Padmakumar K (rural credit), Rajendra Kumar (agribusiness), Salil Nair (technology) and Manoj Ramaswamy (finance and strategy). It has partnered with financial institutions and technology providers and uses a unique underwriting method that takes into account farmers’ credit profile, farming history, crop characteristics, price trends commodities and weather conditions.
KiVi provides digital solutions and a phygital platform allowing the farmer to source inputs, access credit, implement agronomic practices and process and market production. Founder and CEO Joby asserted that KiVi is a one-of-a-kind technology platform designed for farming as a business enterprise and will enable farmers to access services such as agronomy, inputs, buyer aggregation, financial services, logistics, quality management, risk management and warehousing, among others.
With KiVi, lending institutions, including PSU banks, have easy access to high-quality, verified PSL (Priority Sector Lending) wallets for end use. Farmers can access loans at the exact time they need funds, whether it is for the purchase of seeds, fertilizers or pesticides or to meet other related expenses such as the rental of a tractor. or the workforce. Loan repayment is structured to match the seasonality of the farmer’s cash flow instead of a lump sum payment.
In addition to accessing loans, smallholder farmers can sell their produce on the platform which has so far enabled the purchase of agricultural produce worth Rs 5 crore (wheat, paddy and maize) from more than 200 farmers in four selected districts of Bihar, the spokesperson added. Participating farmers earned a patronage bonus of two percent or more on transactions. KiVi is preparing to launch its inbound market linking solution by the end of this quarter and is exploring start-up investments to support its platform development and scale-up of operations.
Joby said KiVi was delighted to launch its loan product coinciding with India’s 75th Independence Day celebrations. “We believe that timely, affordable and appropriately structured loans will go a long way in helping smallholder farmers achieve financial independence.” Prior to founding KiVi, Joby was CEO of Dvara KGFS, a rural financial services provider.
Padmakumar K, co-founder and chief product officer, KiVi, said the loans will initially be activated in selected districts in Bihar, and soon in Tamil Nadu. “We help farmers register on our technology platform. Thereafter, the technology platform performs the underwriting and ensures seamless disbursement of loans from the lender to the borrower’s bank account. Padmakumar thanked the financial and technology partners for their support in developing this farmer-centric product. “We are encouraged by the strong interest shown by lending institutions to co-develop direct Agri PSL loans,” he added. Prior to co-founding KiVi, Padmakumar led the micro banking business of ESAF Small Finance Bank.
No less than 85% of farmers own less than two hectares of land and 50% of them do not have access to formal credit. Moreover, their productivity is at least 60% lower than world averages. “Therefore, agriculture does not provide sufficient income to be considered a livelihood of choice. KiVi is on a mission to make agriculture a livelihood of choice for millions of Indians,” Joby said. Typically, a farmer receives loans from a local lender at exorbitant interest rates and is subject to unfair practices. On the other hand, formal financial institutions are struggling to establish the last-mile transaction capacity that is needed to effectively issue and manage loans to farmers, he added.
First published on: August 13, 2022, 09:30 IST