Navi’s banking dream gets a reality check. What can Sachin Bansal do?

Navi’s banking dream gets a reality check. What can Sachin Bansal do?

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Pratik Bhakta

137 reads
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Pratik Bhakta

137 reads

With RBI turning down its licence request, Navi may have to wait for three years before it can reapply. The challenge before the Flipkart co-founder is to maintain his new company’s hyper-growth and ramp up its lending business, which is easier said than done

May 19, 2022

8 MINS READ

Sachin Bansal has grand plans for his financial services company, Navi Group. But the law of the game, as seen this week, dictates that they must wait or endure painful changes if regulatory checkpoints prove too hard to cross.

Bansal left Flipkart, the ecommerce giant he co-founded, in 2018 and went after a sector which has huge service gaps (read opportunity) but is tightly governed. The hip options for a new business at the time were neobank, digital payments and small finance bank. 

But he and Navi (more specifically, group NBFC Chaitanya India Fin Credit) targeted the bigger prize — the licence to start a universal bank. On Tuesday, RBI demurred and rejected their application. Securing this nod was never going to be a cakewalk. Still, the development is a severe jolt to Navi’s ambitions at a time when it is about to hit the market to raise Rs 600 crore through a public debt issue.

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