SMBStory also spoke to several MSMEs who welcomed the new custom duties and shared their thoughts about other initiatives.
This week has been eventful for the small and medium business sector. After a difficult year, the sector was looking forward to the Union Budget 2021. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman allocated Rs 15,700 crore to the MSME sector, besides laying a special framework for Data Analytics, Machine Learning (ML), and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to assist the sector.
SMBStory spoke to several MSMEs who welcomed the new custom duties and shared their thoughts about other initiatives.
This week, we also covered Bankit- a fintech company, which is helping the underbanked Tier-III, Tier-IV cities with digital banking solutions and Jayshri Gayatri Food Products that launched a B2C dairy arm to sell paneer, butter and cheese in India after its B2B exports business came to a standstill in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to PwC India, the digital payments landscape in the country has been growing rapidly over the last few years. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) reported a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 61 percent in volume, and 19 percent in value for digital payments in India between 2014–2019. While digitisation of small and medium scale businesses has seen rapid adoption of technology in India’s Tier III and IV towns, people in these areas are yet to take digital payments seriously.
This is where organisations like BANKIT play an important role, as they ensure financial services to the last mile of society.
BANKIT is a fintech company based in Noida, Uttar Pradesh that provides secure banking financial services, and helps residents of rural areas to experience easy and fast digital payments through a single platform.
Founded in 2010 by Amit Nigam and Satyajit Limaye, the company began operations seven years later in 2017.
“Between 2010 and 2017, we worked towards setting up the business, and understanding the gaps in the fintech sector. I worked with various companies during this time. Once the Digital India campaign began, and demonetisation happened, leading to growth of the fintech space, we decided to step in and cater to the population of Tier III, IV, and V towns,”says Amit
The COVID-19-induced lockdown presented a huge problem of unsold inventory for entrepreneur Kishan Modi. His Bhopal-headquartered venture Jayshri Gayatri Food Products (JGF) was into manufacturing and selling paneer, butter, cheese, and other value-added dairy products to a B2B market. His list of marquee international clients included McDonald’s, Domino’s and Subway in the US, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia.
In India, his customers included ITC, Britannia, Vadilal, Kwality Wall’s, and other FMCG majors. However, the lockdown presented a unique obstruction. Sales came to a complete halt when India closed its international and inter-state borders.
However, like most challenging situations, this one too presented an opportunity – but only if Kishan dared to enter the B2C market. He decided it was the right time to take the risk and compete in the same market as dairy FMCG behemoths Amul and Britannia. This also allowed him to address JGF’s problem of unsold inventory by selling products locally.
In late 2020, he launched Milk Magic, a domestic B2C dairy products brand, and began retailing in Madhya Pradesh. Milk Magic’s USP is simple: it retails export-quality value-added dairy products in the Indian market.
The brand set up its national retail network via distributors and direct tie-ups with large format food and grocery retailers such as Reliance Fresh. It plans to build its own distribution channel by establishing physical outlets in major cities and will also sell on online retailing platforms. With this omnichannel strategy, Milk Magic will soon enter Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala, and will later expand to Maharashtra, Gujarat, Punjab and other states.