In conversation with Amit Kumar, Founder and CEO & Gunjeet Singh, Co-Founder @ GalaxyCard
Amit Kumar and Gunjeet Singh, founded GalaxyCard – “India’s first online Instant Credit Card”. In a fiercely competitive Credit Card market, where various Banks are launching numerous products to get a share of the spends pie, GalaxyCard is solving the problem of Credit Card application hassles, application approval time frame issues, usage and deterring interest rule factors.
Further there is euphoria in the team, as the project got shortlisted for the YCombinator program. In this interview, we chat up with them on the YCombinator interview experience, the response received on their Product, the growth plans and more.
Q. Congratulations for making it to the shortlisted projects for the YCombinator program. How did the interaction go with the Interview Board and what’s there in the road ahead for the Project?
Team GalaxyCard: In one word: exhilarating. You can immediately see how smart and knowledgable they are! While in the interview time just flies by, and you wish you could continue the discussion and learn more from them!
GalaxyCard continues to grow the user base. We’re committed to making it simpler for our users to get on-boarded, and to start using their GalaxyCard. We’re adding more ways for our users to use GalaxyCard, in our effort to be their preferred mode of payment.
Q. Taking few steps back, how did it all start? What is the customer problem that you are trying to solve with GalaxyCard?
Team GalaxyCard: Getting a credit card is not easy for most people in India. Credit Cards have been made a complex product with their hidden terms and conditions, fees and charges. Applying for one involves a lot of documentation. Even after applying, it takes 3-4 weeks to actually receive a card.
All these factors make it a hard buy for the customers. We are solving this
Q. What’s the business model that you are aiming for?
Team GalaxyCard: GalaxyCard follows the revenue model of a credit card. We get a commission on each transaction from the merchants(MDR). We also earn from the interest when user’s convert their spend to EMIs.
Q. What is the background of the Founders of the GalaxyCard business?
Team GalaxyCard: Amit has previously built and sold Eashmart, a WhatsApp for Payments product. He started with a technical background, but found his calling in creating consumer focussed products.
Gunjeet, also started as an engineer, but his passion for solving problems led him to start a logistics startup, TruckLoad. He shut that down after 2 years of trying to find a viable business model, and joined Amit to build GalaxyCard.
Q. How does the backend integration with the Banks work? We are assuming that the money in circulation on the Card is being made available by few Banks / Financial Institutions.
Team GalaxyCard: GalaxyCard works with Banks and NBFCs to provide credit to customers. GalaxyCard uses our technology to build a magical experience for users to get their credit card, and our partner lenders use their experience to extend the credit to the user.
GalaxyCard helps with on-boarding, payments, and collection, while the lenders do the lending.
Q. How are the GalaxyCard Users reacting to this? What’s the average monthly spends they are doing on the card and for which type of Products / Services?
Team GalaxyCard: Users from all around the country are loving GalaxyCard. This is evident from the fact that people are telling their friends and colleagues about us, even though we do not incentivize them for it. This happens only when there is a genuine problem solved for them.
Our customers spend more than Rs 2000 per month. The spends are for their daily needs, and for big ticket items such as mobiles, healthcare, fashion, etc.
Q. Can you provide more details on the market size for a product like this and how do you see the eco-system evolving to a product like GalaxyCard owing to various initiatives by the Govt on Digital payments, etc.
Team GalaxyCard: Credit Cards are highly unpenetrated in India. Compared to 70% in the USA, only 4% of banked adults have a credit card in India. More than 75 million credit card are expected to be sold in the next 5 years. Given the Govt’s push on digital payments, the market for GalaxyCard is rapidly growing.
Q. What is GalaxyCard trying to do different in this segment to retain its leadership / early-bird mover position?
Team GalaxyCard: We are very customer focussed, to a point where some could call us crazy. The team is always seeking customer feedback and making the product more friendly and easy for our customers.
There’s no other reason, that we are continuously beating our growth targets, except focussing on solving our customers genuine needs.
Q. How are you currently marketing the Product? How do you see the registered Users count grow in the coming months?
Team GalaxyCard: Our marketing efforts are fully focussed on creating a loyal and happy user base. A product that can sell itself does not need any other marketing.
Going forward, we plan to leverage our customer base to make it easy for them to spread the word about us. This helps us use their network and trust to keep the product grow at a tremendous pace.
Q. What has been the funding round(s) till now? And how much funding are you currently planning for the next phase of growth?
Team GalaxyCard: We have received a funding from India Accelerator and are currently closing our investor round with investors from Singapore and USA already on-board.
Q. Tell us more about your and your team’s journey at the India Accelerator over these 6-8 months. How has it been special? What are the learnings you had from Ashish Bhatia, Mona Singh and the other mentors in this duration.
Team GalaxyCard: India Accelerator has been immensely helpful for us. Their support has helped us on various steps in the journey where we needed someone to hear us out, and help plan for our growth.
In the tough times, they provided us with support and boosted our morale to keep us going!
Q. How do you think the India Accelerator mentorship program has helped you? What’s your advice to the many StartUps who are looking for mentorship, guidance and industry-connects at this stage of growth.
Team GalaxyCard: Any startup in it’s infancy, is highly susceptible to the changing environment; Having a support group in terms of mentors, advisors, and network is really important to build a moat around yourself.
India Accelerator was the moat for us. We had to go through tumultuous times and without them we probably would not have made it.
Q. What are the major takeaways from the interaction at YCombinator that you would like to pass onto the other Startups under the India Accelerator mentorship.
Team GalaxyCard: YCombinator helped us realize that the most important thing for a startup is to keep at it. There is nothing more important that focussing on the business growth, and that growth should come from solving customer’s real needs. It’s even better if you have yourself had that problem as you can then relate to the pain of the customer.