A mother’s struggles as a kirana-store owner drove her daughter to help small biz owners access loans

Oct 31, 2022

By: Vaamanaa Sethi

Who is Hardika Shah?

Hardika Shah is the founder and CEO of fintech company Kinara Capital, which provides collateral-free business loans to small business owners within 24-48 hours.

Credit: Imdb

A real-life version of Mohan from the movie Swades

Shah can be said to be the real-life Mohan – a character played by Shahrukh Khan in the movie Swades – as she left her comfortable job in the US to help Indian business owners.

Credit: Imdb

Birth of Kinara Capital

She wanted to do something meaningful. Thus Kinara Capital was born in 2011 with the idea of driving financial inclusion by providing Indian small business entrepreneurs easy loan access within a very short span of time.

Credit: BCCL

Former management consultant

Before returning to India, Shah worked for two decades as a management consultant with Accenture.

Credit: Accenture

A career change

"Switching from a career in management consulting to setting up a non-bank financial company was indeed a troublesome one. I came from consulting services, so handling financial services in India was like understanding a foreign language,” Shah told LiveMint.

Credit: BCCL

What motivated her to switch careers?

Born and raised in a small town in Gujarat, she had seen her mother face a hard time running a small provision store. "She had this ambition to create a chain of these stores but she couldn't do it. That's because she never got access to the capital. My mother dreamt big but never had an access to achieve them," Shah said.

Credit: Canva

Education background

She holds a B.A. in computer science from Knox College in Illinois, USA. She earned her MBA from a joint program between Columbia Business School and UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business.

Credit: Knox-College

About Kinara Capital

The platform offers a quick one-minute eligibility check and can complete the entire process from loan decisioning-to-disbursement within 24-hours. The company claims to have 125 branches across over 100 cities in India.

Credit: Kinara

New finance round

The company, on October 28, said that it had secured around ₹200 crore in a funding round led by UK's development finance institution (DFI), British International Investment (BII).

Credit: Canva

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