Tortoise, a Buy Later (SNBL) firm, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding in a mentors round from Sriharsha Majety, co-founder of Swiggy, and Lizzie Chapman, co-founder of fintech ZestMoney.
The fintech startup had previously raised approximately $2.3 million in a seed round of funding from Vertex Ventures, a subsidiary of global investment firm Temasek.
The current round is an extension of the seed funding round. It is being referred to as a “mentors round” because the startup has two founders as investors to help Tortoise strategize a faster growth plan, according to a statement from the company.
“This round is our mentors round, where we are raising angel cheques from category-defining leaders like Lizzie and Sriharsha and expect a few more such visionaries to join in. We are well capitalized from our seed round, and hence this is less about the investment and more about access to such inspirational leaders,” Vardhan Koshal, co-founder of Tortoise, said.
Tortoise, a fintech app founded in 2021 by Vardhan Koshal and Surya Harsha Nunnaguppala, encourages saving for large purchases. The Tortoise app allows users to save for future purchases by creating a savings plan and earning rewards. Nikhil Joy, a former vice president at ZestMoney, has recently joined the Tortoise team as a co-founder.
“I am elated to be supporting a founder that’s emerging from the ZestMoney family. I wish Nikhil and the team at Tortoise the very best as they take a complementary path to Zest towards making life more affordable for Indians,” said Lizzie Chapman, co-founder of ZestMoney.
Tortoise allows users to save for large purchases and rewards them for doing so. Inspired by Tanishq’s Golden Harvest Scheme, the savings plan offers weekly and monthly savings plans ranging from a few months to a year. In this concept, consumers can make small deposits on the Tortoise app for a specific product over a few months to a year and then use those to buy the product with guaranteed cashback up to Rs 10,000.
SNBL is gaining importance not only in India but also in the western markets such as the US and UK. “Consumerism in India is on the rise and so is the aspiration among consumers to upgrade their lifestyles. However, not all consumers want to or have the capability to pay upfront for large ticket purchases. Besides this, over 93% of Indians do not have access to formal credit and in such scenarios SNBL is the best alternative,” added Koshal.