Accion, the international organisation focused on financial services for the underserved and Saama Capital, an India investment firm, last week announced a USD $4 million in the Shubham Housing Development Finance Company. As the India expands, more people are migrating to cities; 350 million Indians live in cities today, a figure predicted to double by 2030.  Housing is particularly affected by the urban explosion as nearly 50% of India’s city-dwellers are forced into sub-standard housing accommodation as real estate prices increase and affordability declines.

Shubham’s goal is to provide mortgages and home-improvement loans for quality housing, to individuals typically excluded from formal financial systems.  With operations in 17 locations across seven Indian states, Shubham has already helped hundreds of low-income customers through its interview-based method of lending, which goes beyond the traditional document-based approach and leverages new technology to address the unique needs of poorer populations.

“Shubham’s innovative operating model has the potential to change the way significant numbers of urban Indians live – by delivering critical financial services to self-employed, low-income people,” said Monica Brand, head of Accion’s Frontier Investments, an early-and growth-stage equity vehicle that invests in breakthrough innovations that can enhance financial service delivery to the under-and unbanked.  “We are thrilled to partner with a high-efficiency, forward-thinking provider who shares our vision of economic access for all.”

From the press release sourced from PR Newswire that can be read here.