Ratan Tata, Nandan Nilekani to Start Microfinance Company

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Mumbai: Ratan Tata, chairman emeritus of Tata Sons, Vijay Kelkar, former finance secretary and chairman of the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, and Nandan Nilekani, co-founder of Infosys Ltd and the architect of Aadhaar, are joining hands to start a microfinance institution (MFI).

Named Avanti Finance, the company, a “technology-enabled financial inclusion vehicle”, will focus on “delivering affordable and timely credit to under-served and un-served segments in India”, said a statement from Tata Trusts.

Avanti will apply to the Reserve Bank of India for registration and is expected to start operations before the end of the financial year, added the statement.

Tata and Nilekani are investing in setting up this microfinancier from their respective philanthropic capital and “any gains will be reinvested in philanthropic causes”, said the statement. R. Venkataramanan, managing trustee of the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust, will be the fourth founding director. A senior leadership is already in place, the release said without providing any details.

Source: LiveMint (link opens in a new window)

financial inclusion, microfinance, philanthropy