Bengaluru-based financial services platform Groww has gone live with stock trading, expanding its horizon beyond mutual funds and gold.
After testing the service for a few months, Groww recently opened it for its users, claiming to have already opened one lakh accounts. Moneycontrol was the first to write, on May 28, that Groww was beta testing a stock-trading platform.
“We needed to get the broking licence then build the product which took some time. We have been doing internal testing since October 2019 and added more users in April this year. Now, we are opening it for others as well,” chief executive officer Lalit Keshre told Moneycontrol
Its users had been demand stock trading since 2018 and the company had been working on it for quite some time.
The company was targeting the next million investors, young traders who would be attracted to the product because of the simplicity and the user friendliness of the platform, he said.
Having started with buying and selling of stocks, the startup is working on futures and options trading, intra-day trading and others features that it hopes to take live over the next few months.
Any new player in a space has to go up against the incumbents and in stock-trading, Groww will have to fight for its share with the largest stock-broker in the country Zerodha, another tech startup.
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Speaking of competition, Keshre said that they were trying to make stock-trading more democratic and expand the market.
“When we had entered into mutual funds, there were already entrenched players there, even in stock-trading, there is competition but our aim is to grow the market and chase new investors and traders,” he said.
During a previous interaction Abhishant Pant, an angel investor in fintech startups, had said the coronavirus outbreak had thrown up opportunities as well as challenges for new players in the fintech ecosystem.
Groww could leverage the growing interest among Indians in stock trading as many were trying to lap up some scrips cheap during the pandemic, he said.
Given the economic stress, many investors with surplus wealth might chose to save money rather than invest it and that was a challenge.
“Markets cannot be predicted, we can only create good products and offer de-risking capabilities to our investors, we are building Groww along those principles,” Keshre said.
Groww was launched in 2017 by former Flipkart executives Keshre, Harsh Jain, Neeraj Singh and Ishan Bansal. The startup is backed by YCombinator, Sequoia Capital and Ribbit Capital.
In terms of equity support, Keshre said they were in a comfortable position as a low burn gave them quite a long runway.