The new normals in a post-Covid-19 world include one major shift in the way business will be conducted. Dhanvarsha Finvest Ltd helps businesses and entrepreneurs by providing the necessary support and has upped the ante in the lockdown.
Businesses and brands are now are making their way back into the business; planning their communication plans for a new world post the covid-19 lockdown.
In this story of Medianews4u’s super successful brand series, Back to Business, we spoke to Karan Desai and Rohanjeet Singh Juneja, Joint Managing Directors at Dhanvarsha Finvest Ltd.
How are you coping with the impact of Covid-19 on your Dhanvarsha Finvest Limited? How effectively have you used the lockdown period?
While COVID-19 has not been easy on the company or its employees, teams within the company have used this time very judiciously to bolster technology, systems, processes, and collections. The company is making significant strides in collaborating with various partners and stakeholders alike for future periods. Our employees in certain departments like technology, collections, and collaborations have said that work from home during the lockdown has been far busier than normal workdays. We have also been able to successfully build the brand further with our investors, lenders, and borrowers in these times, which is a substantial achievement. As you may know, we have recently announced the signing of definitive documents for equity capital infusion into the company from a foreign portfolio investor and the promoter group which is a substantial milestone for the company.
The quest for a solution to a particular crisis helps invent new business opportunities and sometimes leads to a revision of existing business models … What sort of innovation has or will the Covid-19 pandemic bring to your brand/industry/category?
We believe most financial services companies will have to spend a lot more time on collections and also develop co-lending models to preserve capital. For us, we were fortunate that our loan book was modest in size and hence we had no legacy issues to take care of. Given the granularity of the loan book with small ticket size loans, we were very focused on building the right sales platforms to reach the right customers. We started focusing on affinity groups and inked deals with several groups because of our ability to understand their business and help them in their time of need. This was the biggest innovation for us during COVID-19.
While some parts of the country have become Covid-19 free, cities like Mumbai and Delhi are still in a lockdown situation. How are you planning to resume business across cities that are not in the Red?
We are beginning slowly but surely. Activity has already re-started with complete precautionary measures in Gujarat, parts of Rajasthan, and parts of Maharashtra. We are still being cautious because we need to make sure our people are protected.
What will be your communication strategy post the opening of the lockdown? Understandably bringing customers back to you would be difficult… What will be the objective of the communication/marketing strategy?
Our communication has always been and will always be about how we can help our customers beyond just providing them with financial capital. We want to be the catalyst to the entrepreneurs of India, by becoming not only their most preferred financial partner but also their partners in business and social growth. Our mission is to empower entrepreneurs by lending a hand (financial support), lending head (business support), and lending heart (social & emotional support).
How did you keep the morale of the employees during this lockdown period? On a personal note, what kept you positive?
We spoke to our teams regularly. We emphasized the need to make sure systems and processes are bolstered while at the same time we gave all members of our team enough time to take care of family and home matters given the fact that everyone was working from home. On calls, we would remind people to eat healthy and exercise for some time during the day to stay mentally and physically fit. What kept top management positive and motivated was the plethora of things we were in the midst of which includes debt raising from banks, equity raising from a PE investor, revamping the entire technology platform and much more.
What are some of the post-lockdown business strategies that you will use to bring the business back on track or at least get it in the right direction and also create demand for yourself?
As cliché as it sounds, it’s back to basics. First thing we have done is keep a very close watch on containing expenses. Secondly, which segments can we lend to that have weathered the storm of the last two months and which are the sectors that need help to circle out of the negative impact from the lockdown. There is more than enough demand in the market. We just have to make sure we keep our checks and balances while lending to the right customers and also picking those who have had a big temporary setback but have the ability to make a ‘come-back’.
What was the vision with which Dhanvarsha was formed?
Dhanvarsha was formed with a vision to empower, with financial access, the unserved and underserved entrepreneurs of India. The mission is to not just achieve broad-based financial inclusion in India. It is to also achieve financial inclusion with a greater social purpose – to build social capital. We truly believe that seldomly does a company like ours that wants to make a big social impact get an opportunity like we have today to help our customers. As they say “With adversity comes success’ and “Where there is chaos there is an opportunity”.