Bengaluru-headquartered corporate credit card provider Karbon Card has raised $2 million in a seed round from a group of Indian and Chinese angel investors including Cred founder Kunal Shah, Pine Labs CEO Amrish Rau, and founder of Citrus Pay and Jupitar Jitendra Gupta.
The company will use the capital for product development, operations and market expansion, a statement issued by the company said.
Founded in 2019 by former executives at Shanghai-based venture capital firm 01VC, Amit Jangir and Pei-fu Hseih, and Tencent executive Bo-Li, Karbon Card works with over 200 startups and emerging technology companies including credit card payment app Cred, wholesale marketplace Jumbotail and apartment management platform MyGate.
“The startup sector is a high-risk and small-return market for banks. Bank credit cards are not friendly to the startups and they are not capable of assessing the risk in the startup ecosystem. We understand the space better,” Pei-fu Hseih, CEO at Karbon Card, said. He told TechCircle that the platform makes money every time the card is swiped with a merchant through the merchant discount rate (MDR) charges.
Karbon Card also offers startup-focused rewards of upto $50,000 in the form of AWS Activate and discounts on MakeMyTrip, Uber, WeWork and software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings from Hubspot, Freshworks and Segment. The platform also provides an expense management tool on the dashboard for the company to help them keep track of reimbursements and expense reports.
“I can see first-hand that within a short span of a few months, Karbon Card has been embraced by many Indian startups. We see massive potential for this sector in India. I myself am not just an investor but also an avid user of Karbon Card,” Jupiter's Gupta said.
Enterprise-focused fintech products have seen increased interest from early stage investors. Karbon Card backers from India -- Rau, Shah and Gupta -- invested $1.3 million in a Chennai based fintech company YAP in February. In the same month, an out-sized seed round, offline-to-online fintech platform DotPe raised $8 million.