How Two Friends Created a Business to Revolutionize India's Fintech Industry

Two former Amazon workers, Akash Sinha, and Reeju Datta, founded Cashfree, a well-known Indian payment gateway, in 2015. It began as a gateway for small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) and has since developed into a provider of full-stack payments solutions.

How Two Friends Created a Business to Revolutionize India's Fintech Industry

Cashfree: The Upstart Indian Payment Gateway

India-based companies can get a full-stack payments solution from Cashfree, a company that specializes in banking and payments technology. The company was founded in 2015 by two friends, Akash Sinha, and Reeju Datta, and has since grown to rank among the top fintech startups in India. It offers a number of services, such as a payment gateway, split payments, virtual accounts, and bulk payouts.

The founders' struggles receiving payments from clients as independent contractors frequently inspired the idea for Cashfree. As a result, they came to understand the need for a more streamlined payment system that would make it easier for companies of all sizes to manage their finances.

Akash and Reeju built a platform to enable simple, safe, and quick online payments in order to make their vision a reality. They began by creating a payment gateway that could easily integrate with various e-commerce platforms and enable businesses to accept payments from customers using a variety of methods, including credit/debit cards, net banking, UPI, and wallets.

The pair's dedication and perseverance helped them land seed funding from Y Combinator in 2017 in the amount of $120,000, which enabled them to expand their business and draw in more clients. Today, Cashfree provides services to more than 50,000 companies in India, including well-known brands like Zomato, CRED, Xiaomi, HDFC Ergo, and others.

Over the years, Cashfree has developed new products like bulk payouts and virtual accounts that help businesses manage their finances more effectively. Cashfree has also expanded its product line. To provide customers with instant settlements and other value-added services, the business has also formed partnerships with important banks like HDFC, ICICI, and Axis Bank.

Cashfree has succeeded in carving out a niche in the Indian payments market despite fierce competition from well-established players like Paytm, Razorpay, and Instamojo by putting an emphasis on simplicity, speed, and security. Numerous awards, including the Best Fintech Startup Award at the Entrepreneur India Awards 2019 and the Payments Innovation Award at the ET BFSI Awards 2020, have been given to the company in recognition of its accomplishments.

Cashfree is anticipated to experience significant growth over the next few years as the Indian economy transitions to digital payments. The business, which has already made a name for itself as a top provider of payment gateway solutions in India, is currently looking to grow internationally. Cashfree made plans to extend its services to the Middle East and Southeast Asia markets public in 2021. 

Cashfree is also making significant investments in technology to improve its payment options. To protect its customers' transactions, the business has already introduced AI-powered fraud detection and prevention tools. Additionally, it is creating new payment products to meet the changing demands of both consumers and businesses.

With big goals to go beyond India and dominate the payments and banking industries, Cashfree has big plans. The business is well-positioned to accomplish its objectives and have an impact on the fintech industry thanks to its talented team, cutting-edge products, and unwavering dedication to customer satisfaction. 

As Cashfree grew, it began concentrating on offering payment gateway services to companies. In 2017, it introduced the Cashfree Payment Gateway, which enables companies to accept payments online using a variety of methods, including credit cards, debit cards, net banking, and UPI. Additionally, the business unveiled Cashfree Payouts, a platform that enables companies to pay out employees, vendors, and clients in bulk.

In a Series A funding round led by Korea Investment Partners (KIP) and including previous investors Y Combinator and Smilegate, Cashfree raised $5.5 million in 2018. The money was used by the business to increase team size, improve technology, and diversify its product line.

Cashfree has won numerous awards over the years for its cutting-edge payment methods. It was named "Fintech Startup of the Year" at the India Fintech Awards in 2019 after winning the "Best Payments Startup" honour at the IAMAI Digital Awards in 2018.

When it raised $35.3 million in a Series B funding round led by private equity firm Apis Growth Fund II in 2020, Cashfree joined the unicorn club. The money was spent by the business to increase team size, improve technology infrastructure, and broaden product offerings. 

Cashfree had $42.3 million in funding as of 2021. Over 50,000 businesses use Cashfree as a payment gateway in India, where it has grown in popularity. The company lists Zomato, Cred, HDFC Ergo, Xiaomi, and Delhivery among its many clients.

The Cashfree Future

As the Indian economy shifts towards digital payments, Cashfree is poised for significant growth in the coming years. The company has already established itself as a leading payment gateway solution provider in India and is now looking to expand its operations globally. In 2021, Cashfree announced its plans to expand its services to the Middle East and Southeast Asia markets.

Cashfree is also investing heavily in technology to enhance its payment solutions further. The company has already introduced AI-powered fraud detection and prevention tools to safeguard its customers' transactions. It is also developing new payment products that will cater to the evolving needs of businesses and consumers.