The partnership will focus on developing an aggregator platform for women entrepreneurs aimed at providing access to peer support, mentorship, networking channels and a range of learning resources
BharatPe Group has partnered with the Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP) to enable women entrepreneurs across India in their journeys of self-reliance and business growth. The partnership aims to build an ecosystem that brings together women entrepreneurs from different parts of the country and equips them with the required domain knowledge and the financial and technical know-how needed to fulfill their business goals.
The core focus area will be facilitating the development of an aggregator platform that gives access to peer support, mentorship, networking channels and a range of learning resources.
Launched under ‘BharatPe Cares’, a corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative by BharatPe Group, this partnership aligns with the Group’s brand purpose to empower lives through inclusive fintech solutions. This specific initiative rests under the CSR program of PAYBACK, a BharatPe company.
According to the sixth economic census by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, women comprise only 13.76 per cent of the total entrepreneurs in India, which is 8.05 million out of the total 58.5 million entrepreneurs. The figure indicates that women entrepreneurs need to be empowered so they can follow their dreams.
Bearing this in mind, the partnership aims to address the constraining barriers faced by women entrepreneurs across India and facilitate a level playing field wherein women enjoy equal growth opportunities.
Speaking on this announcement, Nalin Negi, CFO and interim CEO, BharatPe, claimed that as a homegrown fintech, the unicorn’s engagement with women solopreneurs and small business owners has helped it understand the challenges faced from their lens. The most important is the lack of access to financial know-how, networking channels, mentorship and fundraising opportunities.
“As per an industry report, women entrepreneurs in India can generate 150-170 million jobs by 2030, which is more than 25 per cent of the new jobs required for the entire working-age population,” he added. “Thus, driving women's entrepreneurship would boost the economy through job creation and is critical to building India as a US$ 5 trillion economy. Our partnership with WEP aims to facilitate the development of a plug-and-play digital infrastructure to address the existing gaps and aid the growth of women entrepreneurs.”
Anna Roy, mission director at WEP, stated that India’s entrepreneurial ecosystem is thriving, but women-led businesses still need a lot of support to help scale businesses, and more so due to social biases. Women entrepreneurs across the country face an unfair disadvantage due to exclusion from networking channels and mentorship opportunities.
“WEP is a public-private initiative that aims at providing a continuum of support to women entrepreneurs by leveraging the network of various stakeholders who are part of the ecosystem. The idea is to connect these seamlessly across the board, overcome information asymmetry and empower women by giving them the right information at the right time,” she noted.
BharatPe was founded in 2018 and launched India’s first UPI interoperable QR code, the first zero MDR payment acceptance service. In 2020, post-Covid, it also launched a card acceptance terminal, BharatSwipe. It currently serves 1 crore merchants across 400 cities processing over 30 crores UPI transactions per month with an annualized Transaction Processed Value of over $ 24 billion in payments.
The company has already facilitated the disbursement of loans totaling Rs 8000 crores. BharatPe’s POS business processes payments of over $3.5 billion annually on its machines. It has raised over $ 583 million in equity till date from investors, including Tiger Global, Dragoneer Investment Group, Steadfast Capital, Coatue Management, Ribbit Capital, Insight Partners, Steadview Capital, Beenext, Amplo, and Sequoia Capital.