Billdesk - Expanding or Selling off the Business ?

Sarika Anand Sarika Anand
Dec 11, 2020 7 min read
Billdesk - Expanding or Selling off the Business ?

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Using a payment gateway can help to lessen frequency and severity of credit card fraud within an e-commerce business. Payment gateway allows the merchants to process credit, debit and other alternative online payments. Payment gateway acts as the go-between to make sure that customer data is encrypted and secure.

BillDesk is an Indian online payment gateway company based in Mumbai, India. The company provides payment solutions for customers in e-commerce, financial services, retail, and other sectors.

Billdesk - Company Highlights

Startup Name BillDesk
Headquarters Mumbai, India
Industry Finance
Founded 2000
Founder M.N. Srinivasu, Ajay Kaushal and Karthik Ganapathy
CEO M.N. Srinivasu
Area Served India

Billdesk - About and How it Works?
Billdesk - Logo and its Meaning
Billdesk - Founder and History
Billdesk - Mission
Billdesk - Business Model
Billdesk - Revenue and Growth
Billdesk - Funding and Investors
Billdesk - Competitors
Billdesk - Challenges Faced
Billdesk - Future Plans
Billdesk - FAQs

Billdesk - About and How it Works?

Founded in 2000, by a team of ex-Arthur Andersen professionals, BillDesk, an Indian online payment gateway company continues to be at the forefront of the digital payments' evolution in India, creating Internet based payments products that enable consumers to make payments online in a frictionless manner.

A product and service of about over 20 years of market leadership, BillDesk provides a reliable payment platform for enterprise wide electronic payments and collections, related reconciliation and settlement operations, across multiple delivery channels and using a wide range of payment methods.

Billdesk - Logo and its Meaning

Billdesk's logo is the company's name written in block letters on a yellow background with white colour in the centre which symbolizes a white colour light that becomes yellow after travelling through a distance. The colour yellow is associated with warmth, sunshine, and positivity.

BillDesk's Company Logo
Billdesk's Company Logo

Billdesk - Founder and History

Billdesk was founded in 2000 by M.N. Srinivasu, Ajay Kaushal and Karthik Ganapathy. Back then, all three of them were employed in the American accounting firm, Arthur Anderson. They quit their jobs to start their own company.

Founders of Billdesk
Founders of Billdesk

During that time, people had to stand in long queues to pay any bills, be it phone bills or electricity bills. This gave the founders an idea of a convenient payment platform, who then decided to do something to make this process simple and more convenient with the help of an online platform and this is how they started out with their company.

In 2001, BillDesk received its first investment from SIDBI Venture Capital Ltd and Bank of Baroda.

In 2006, Clearstone Venture Partners and State Bank of India jointly invested $7.5 million in the company.

In 2012, US-based PE firm TA Associates made an undisclosed investment in BillDesk.

In 2015, BillDesk received an investment of USD 200 million from General Atlantic and Temasek thereby giving the company a total valuation of USD 1 billion dollars.

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Billdesk - Mission

Billdesk's vision and mission statement says, "At BillDesk we are committed to this vision of implementing innovative solutions for simplifying payments and collections and translating the opportunities offered by the Internet into actual customer delight through efficient payment and collection services."

Billdesk - Business Model

Billdesk started by connecting banks with any merchant or utility that had to accept payments from customers. An important feature of this business model was that it involved no end-consumer acquisition for BillDesk—the company would only take a cut from the merchant, bank or utility for every transaction it facilitates.

The platform is used by many Indian organizations, companies and banks. This includes companies in the industry of telecom, insurance, e-commerce, financial services, charity organizations and many entertainment providers.

BillDesk provides a platform for various online and mobile payments that can be made through aggregator platforms in India.

"It is focussed on the right market segments—banks, financial services, utilities, retail, ecommerce and government—and investors are optimistic about how big the business can become over time," Dheeraj Poddar (country head, India, at TA Associates Advisory) said.

Bill desk helps customers to organize, manage and make payments for any regular or recurring bills that they might have. Customers can also go back and review all their payments, in addition to receiving and paying through this gateway. This has provided the customers with a safer, quicker and more efficient way of doing financial transactions.

Billdesk - Revenue and Growth

The company has been profitable for over a decade, though it does not reveal exact figures. For the year 2017-18, the startup saw a rise in profit (consolidated) to Rs.149 crore from a profit amount of Rs.138 crore. The revenue for the consolidated statements saw an increase from Rs. 899.7 crore to Rs. 1102.8 crore which would be an increase of 22.6%. Along with revenue, even the total expenditure saw an increase from Rs. 772.7 crore to Rs. 943.7 crore.

However, one thing to notice was that the growth rate for both net profit and sales had decreased since the previous financial year of 2016-17.

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Billdesk - Funding and Investors

Billdesk has raised a total of $241.4M in funding over 4 rounds. Their latest funding was raised on Nov 16, 2018 from a Corporate Round round. Billdesk is funded by 7 investors. Visa, General Atlantic and Temasek Holdings are the most recent investors.

Date Round Money Lead Investor
Nov 16, 2018 Corporate Round ₹6B Visa
Mar 15, 2016 Secondary Market $150M General Atlantic
Apr 4, 2012 Private Equity Round - TA Associates
Jun 22, 2006 Venture Round $7.5M Clearstone Venture Partners, State Bank of India

Billdesk - Competitors

BillDesk's competitors include TechProcess Payment Services, GooglePay, Razorpay, Airpay, Oxigen, PayUbiz, Paytm, Instamojo, CCAvenue, PhonePe and Payworld.

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Billdesk - Challenges Faced

During the start of July 2020, BillDesk was looking at opportunities in the market so that it could sell its business. The company had tried selling their business in the past as well but were unable to do so. So this year they made another attempt.

Due to the intense competition that is present in this segment, it is only expected to increase. It is due to this competition in the digital payments segment that it is essential for companies to create an integrated payment system.

So, one of the obstacles was to wade off competition as the company is under low profile and a lot of other well marketed small start-ups have been erupting here and there, example PayUmoney, Paytm, Citrus and CC Avenue. But having been in industry for almost two decades has definitely added an edge to the company to wade off competition and also having a good clientele has definitely helped.

A recent Obstacle faced by the company was when the Reserve Bank of India reduced the commission rates on almost all the online transaction which was a burden on the Payment Gateway company BillDesk. Yet they kept up their pace and were steadily delivering their services, thereby they were finally in the profit margin.

There have been stricter regulations regarding the payment gateways and aggregators (their commissions have reduced). Also, the demand for such gateways has been on the rise continuously, and the need for a fully integrated system has been realized by BillDesk because it still remains just a payment gateway. Most investors are thus, also being pulled towards companies that offer more front end services for their customers.

Billdesk - Future Plans

Billdesk is provides its service to almost all the cities in India. It plans on bringing in automation and artificial intelligence to have further smother transactional experience for the customers are to go on to acquire bigger brands and more customers.

Domestic payment gateway BillDesk is again on the market to sell off after it was unsuccessfully sold two years ago by its promoters.

However, the BillDesk promoters are trying to sell off the whole company this time around, following a rapidly rising rivalry in the country’s digital payment processing space and booming e-commerce industry.

This was confirmed by two people with direct knowledge of BillDesk‘s plans, adding that BillDesk promoters and the company’s single largest shareholder, General Atlantic, have called at least eight investment bankers for talks on shortlisting a suitor.

Billdesk - FAQs

What is BillDesk?

BillDesk is an Indian online payment gateway company based in Mumbai, India.

Is BillDesk Indian?

Yes, BillDesk is an Indian online payment gateway company.

How does BillDesk make money?

BillDesk takes a commission from the merchants and utilities it serves and none from end-customers. The company has been profitable for over a decade, though it does not reveal exact figures.

How does BillDesk payment gateway work?

BillDesk is a one-stop online payment provider that helps customers organize, pay and manage their regular and ongoing bills. Customers can receive, review and pay all the bills they receive from different providers in one place with BillDesk.

Who is the CEO of Billdesk?

Srinivasu MN is the current CEO of Billdesk.

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