Education Loans becomes bearable through start ups.

Ashikavinod | Monday, September 26, 2016 1:21 PM IST

Gyan Dhan, founded by two IIT alumni -Ankit Mehra and Jainesh Sinha -operates in the higher education segment for foreign universities. The startup, partnering with SBI and Axis Bank, facilitates loan disbursal to students who do not even have a collateral. 'Over half the close to 100 loans have been processed without collateral,' said Sinha. The startup takes into consideration the employability quotient of the student. 

Sinha said the startup also tries to reduce unnecessary paper work. 'In one case, the bank had asked an applicant to furnish the i20 form (which states that you are a non-immigrant student), which wasn't required. We approached the bank and got the loans sanctioned.

The startup has processed loans worth Rs 21 crore, with an average ticket size of Rs 27 lakh across the country. 
OpenTap, a peer-to-peer lending platform, does the vetting process before it connects loan borrowers and loan givers. OpenTap says 40% of its loans are for educational purposes-for school and college-going students. 'At OpenTap, we give loans mostly to blue-collar workers through the employer. Many of our loan borrowers work in the textile, auto, chemicals and ancillary industries -so we access their credit worthiness through the employer.

'Employers find it as a huge relief as many of these are under pressure to give salary advances. If they give salary advance for one employee they'll have to follow-suit for other employees. So, for them it helps that we are stepping in and willing to offer credit.Blue-collar workers are traditionally severely underban ked -banks are unwilling to give them loans because they don't have a credit score or history,' says Natarajan. 
Shiksha, a Chennai-based startup co-founded by chartered accountants-Jacob Abraham and V L Ramakrishnan, Shiksha-operates in the school education segment for auto drivers, small store owners and those without a valid credit score. It lends money every year with the collateral being a letter of recommendation from schools that the parents have paid their fees regularly.