(Columbia University-2005 MS, College of Engineering Guindy, Anna University – 2001 BE)
(MOP Vaishnav College, University of Madras – 2002 BBA)
(Georgia Institute of Techology – 2003 MS, College of Engineering Guindy, Anna University -2002 B.E)
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BankBazaar.com is an Indian online loan marketplace that gives instant customized rate quotes on loans and insurance products. User can instantly search for, compare and apply for loans, credit cards and insurance products on website. They are partner with India’s leading financial institutions and insurance firms.
Prior to BankBazaar.com, Adhil Shetty lived in New York City and managed Deloitte Touche Tomahatsu’s US East alliances with the world’s leading information management company. Before that, He worked with Cisco Systems as an engineer in Bangalore and San Jose. He has a Master’s degree in international relations with a specialization in international finance and business from Columbia University in the city of New York, and a Bachelor’s degree in engineering from the College of Engineering Guindy, Anna University.
When he and his wife,Rati Rajkumar were looking for a home loan in Chennai in early 2007 and found it really hard to get a good deal. They had to go to bank offices during working hours, stand in line and fill in forms to get a quote. Once they got the quotes, they still found it hard to compare them as banks quoted interest rates in different ways and they never spelled out the various fees associated with the home loan.
Additionally, they learnt that banks didn’t usually start off offering them the best rate that they were eligible for. They’d usually try and charge them a higher rate and they had to bargain hard to get them to lower their rates. At the end of a week, they still weren’t convinced that they were getting the best deal on the home loan. Many people they spoke to had had similar experiences. Hence, they brainstormed on whether they could make this process more convenient and the more they spoke about it, the more they became convinced that they could. Thus, they founded BankBazaar.com.
Before long, Arjun’s brother Adhil Shetty joined in, and by July 2008 the Chennai-based BankBazaar.com was launched as a neutral online marketplace offering instant rate quotes on loans and insurance products. The credit market in India was also fast-growing.
The biggest challenge is to convince the financial institutions (FIs) that the Indian market is ready for loan applications online. They had to make them understand the growing trends that customers are increasingly booking flight tickets online, paying electricity bills online and finding their life partner’s online. They had to get the FIs to understand that the benefits of instantly comparing loan offers online will find acceptance among
the Indian audience.For the financial institutions, loan application and disbursement processing is an expensive process as they need to build branches, incur staff salary costs as well as pay the loan agents. For the loan-seekers, there is a need to understand all the terms of the loan, in addition to interest rate, and parameters such as fees and pre-payment terms. By using technology, Bankbazaar cut physical transaction costs. ING Vysya was the second bank they approached, and the first to sign them on. It had a dynamic person on board who wanted them to build a similar prototype for ING Vysya, and that was a good move. Today, it has biggies like Kotak Mahindra, Reliance Consumer Finance, Fullerton, Standard Chartered Bank and HDFC, others across personal loans, home loans and auto loans, as partners. They charge the financial institutions a small fee for every loan disbursed through us. Using BankBazaar.com is completely free for customers.
BankBazaar.com offers an end-to-end process right from getting customized rate quotes based on a customer’s eligibility (according to the information he/she provides), comparing loan offers and applying directly online through its easy-to-use tools. Every customer accessing the portal is expected to fill in basic information as a pre-requisite to applying for a loan, including uploading his/her bank statement. After a customer chooses a loan, the information goes to a dedicated sales channel at the back-end. Within an hour, a sales representative collects the remaining documents from a customer, ready for processing the loan. Their model keeps a customer ready with all the documents needed to apply for a loan. The model is deemed to save costs and time for both banks and customers. For banks, it reduces a lot of paperwork and acts as a strong distribution channel to get customers. The process is completely free for a customer, and banks in turn pay the startup a commission per customer depending on the loan amount disbursed. Policybazaar acts as another client for a bank—we bring in business for them.Bankbazaar does not charge its customers anything but collects a fee from banks, for which getting customer via the portal is around 70 per cent cheaper than the usual route.