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Avanti Finance appoints CEO; operations to start next year

Avanti Finance, founded by corporate bigwigs like Ratan Tata and Nandan Nilekani, on Thursday announced appointment of Rahul Gupta as its Chief Executive Officer.

The company targets to begin full-scale operations in the first half of 2019, with a goal to serve 100 million households in the next five years, the company said in a statement.

The other founder members include reputed economist Vijay Kelkar and Managing Trustee of the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust R Venkataramanan.

Avanti has been conceived as a financial inclusion model with a mission to provide timely, affordable credit to the unserved and under-served segments leveraging new age digital technologies, it said.

“The funding for Avanti has come from the personal philanthropic capital of Tata and Nilekani, and their returns will be redeployed into philanthropy. Avanti’s objective carries forward the goals of the Tata Trusts in striving for socio-economic development in the hinterlands of the country for the last 126 years,” it said.

The Avanti platform leverages India’s digital infrastructure, and will partner with social sector players and community organisations and it has begun pilots in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand.

Prior to joining, Gupta was with GE Money as managing director for the full suite of its businesses for the 10 countries of the ASEAN region.

Commenting on the appointment, Ratan N Tata said, “Rahul possesses the experience of leading consumer finance both in India and developed countries.