The journey of building the ecosystem from scratch started in 2014, when Harshil Mathur (CEO & Co-Founder) and Shashank Kumar (MD & Co-Founder) were working on a crowdfunding portal project for India, they soon realized that most of the online payment gateway solutions were extremely cumbersome to get started on, especially for startups and SMEs. The company was surprised to see that the simple process of accepting payments was not streamlined. So they went about building an ecosystem from scratch with a hyperfocus on making the lives of businesses simpler and that's how Razorpay was born. The company witnessed the dismal state of the online payments industry in India and understood that they have a larger and more important issue to solve - democratizing payments for Indian businesses, particularly the underserved market, the SMEs. Razorpay today powers online payments for 34 of the 42 startups in India that became unicorns in 2022. Razorpay enables payments and banking solutions for over 10Mn businesses, including the likes of Facebook, Airtel, Lenskart, Mirae Asset Capital markets, Indian Oil, National Pension Scheme, TataConsultancy Services, Swiggy, CRED, BookMyShow, Ola, Zomato, Swiggy, ICICI Prudential among others. The core premise of the vision and values that Razorpay was founded in 2014 is the same as the organization practices today. It is to make money movement simpler and easier. Razorpay is on the path of building the Central Nervous System of Digital India, the next-gen payments and banking infrastructure for Digital India. The company will continue building an ecosystem that will not just build intelligent products that will make the lives of businesses easy and efficient but also drive financial growth and innovation for small businesses. All this is being done, together, in collaboration with banks, regulators, and stakeholders so that India can build a better place for doing business. Razorpay’s valuation jumped from $1 billion to $7.5 billion in just 14 month in 2021 and has added a host of marquee investors to its captable. Razorpay is also the second Indian company to be a part of Silicon Valley’s largest tech accelerator, Y Combinator. Marquee investors such as Lone Pine Capital, Alkeon Capital, TCV, GIC, Tiger Global, Sequoia Capital India, Ribbit Capital, Matrix Partners, Salesforce Ventures, Y Combinator, and MasterCard have invested a total of $741.5 Mn through Series A, B, C, D, E and F funding. The last financing round of Series F led the company’s valuation to $7.5 Billion signaling one of the fastest increases in valuation for an Indian Unicorn. Razorpay plans to further scale up its Business Banking Suite, RazorpayX, and again build new banking solutions in 2023 that will help businesses focus less on handling compliance, operations and more on growth. This commitment to make lives simpler will continue at a much deeper level now, thanks to the opportunity to make acquisitions with like-minded companies. In total, till date, Razorpay has made seven acquisitions over the course of time: Acquired Ezetap in 2022 - India’s leading offline POS company, PoshVine in 2022 - India’s leading fintech startup that provides payments-linked loyalty solutions to payment networks, banks, and businesses, IZealiant in 2022 - A mobile-first, API-enabled, and cloud-ready payment solution and made its first international foray in South-East Asia by announcing its acquisition of Curlec in 2022 - A Recurring revenue platform. TeraFin Labs in 2021 - the AI-based SaaS platform that facilitates digital financing solutions. RazorpayX Payroll in 2019 - a Payroll and HR Management Software company, to solve for seamless automation of a business’s entire payroll process, and Thirdwatch in 2019 - an Artificial Intelligence (AI) driven company specializing in big data and machine learning for real-time fraud prevention. Customer has always been at the core of all disruption that the company does, from addressing evolving needs to delivering new solutions: - This hyperfocus helped bring Razorpay’s several Industry first innovation into the market since 2014. Razorpay became the first to launch completely digital on-boarding process for startups, first to launch support for UPI, first to launch support for Bharath QR, first to introduce recurring payments for businesses through Razorpay Route, automating payment receipts and later automating payouts and making the entire process seamless and optimized and many more were introduced aling the way. Other firsts include: - First to launch India’s Multi-Network Tokenisation solution, TokenHQ - Razorpay became India’s first payment gateway to support credit cards on UPI - Razorpay also became India’s largest omnichannel payment gateway for businesses post acquiring Ezetap which is India’s leading offline POS company that was founded with the aim to simplify the in-person offline payments experience. - Razorpay expanded health insurance policy to include LGBTQIA+ and Live-In Partners- This industry-first move made Razorpay the first Fintech unicorn in India to introduce a thoughtfully diverse and highly inclusive insurance policy for its team members. The new insurance policy, introduced recently, is applicable to all current team members of Razorpay.
Harshil and Shashank met in IIT Roorkee and collaborated together on a number of projects during the course of their college days. Both the co-founders are coders themselves and have written a lot of codes on which Razorpay runs today. They were also the founding members of SDS Labs, the software development section of IIT Roorkee. After they graduated from college, Shashank moved to the USA to work with Microsoft while Harshil went on to work with Schlumberger in the Middle east. Having been good friends since college, they stayed in touch and worked on a bunch of side projects. One such side project was in 2014, where they were building a crowdsourcing platform to collect online donations for a cause, they contacted a few payment gateway companies, and were surprised to see that the simple process of accepting payments was not streamlined. Having faced bad experiences, Harshil and Shashank understood that they have a larger and more important issue to solve - the democratization of payments for Indian businesses, particularly the underserved market - the SMEs so they decided to solve the problems around payments and provide a simple, affordable and secure way for startups, SME’s and organizations like schools, colleges and training centers to accept online payments. Armed with research and a zeal to build a platform dedicated to startups and their payment needs, that’s how Razorpay was founded. For both founders, it’s the attitude of perseverance. And it’s the same trait that is a lifestyle for the Razorpay team. It’s the burning desire to identify problems small businesses are facing around money movement & they love tinkering with technology to solve those. When the founders and team know there is an existing problem that needs to be solved, they persevere through it until they’ve found a solution, come rain or shine. It’s this trait that made Razorpay grow from 10,000 partner businesses in 2017 to over 10 Mn today.
In 2014, after discovering the dismal state of online payments in India Harshil and Shashank founded Razorpay, India’s first payment gateway built for Startups a platform for a simple, affordable, and secure way for businesses to accept payments online. Progressing in the journey that started with payment acceptance, the company also witnessed a progressive acceptance and adoption of digital innovations. But what was surprising was while the big payment players in the market were catering to large businesses, smaller businesses needed immediate attention. In India, MSMEs are the second largest employment-generating sector after agriculture and contribute around 31% to the nation’s GDP. One of the major challenges for SMEs & Startups was the lack of technology infrastructure, especially for B2B payment technologies. There was a need for a comprehensive converged payment and banking solution that can help manage the entire money movement (from acceptance to disbursals) within an organisation. This particular thought gave birth to the launch of Razorpay’s neo-banking platform, RazorpayX, and lending platform Razorpay Capital. The company now offers a single platform for businesses to manage the entire money flow within an organization. Eight years to now, Razorpay evolved from being a payment gateway to India’s first full-stack financial solutions company providing intelligent new-age payment and business banking solutions to help Indian businesses address the entire length and breadth of their payment & banking journey. The company believes that for the next phase of growth in the fintech industry, payment players need to evolve beyond offering solutions for payment acceptance to managing the entire money flow (from acceptance to disbursements and everything in between). Hence, it is of supreme importance to recognize a market (SMEs & Startups), identify challenges, and provide a holistic solution, at scale.
Razorpay is committed to building the central nervous system of digital India. The company aims to change how payments and banking are done for small businesses in India and wants to create a benchmark for the entire world to follow. Razorpay today is India’s leading and first full-stack financial solutions company that offers both payments and banking solutions for businesses on a single platform. The founding team always wanted to build a platform like this because of the single goal - to help businesses spend less time managing compliance and operations and more time creating new products, pursuing new ideas, and thinking about how to scale. The company’s vision continues to produce new idea and innovation that benefits millions of businesses even today. Overall, the company wants to help make India economically more inclusive and is making strides toward that goal. Razorpay believes It’s an exciting time of change and is creating history. Digitization is the lifeblood of any business. It impacts EVERYTHING a business does - from cash flow & hiring to credit, investment & expansion. Businesses can no longer think of digitization as an afterthought! The digital payments landscape has multiplied over the last decade. India has globally positioned itself as a benchmark in digital payments owing to its resilient payment infrastructure, market practices, and proliferation of digital payments across various segments. The adoption of digital payments in the MSME space has unlocked several efficiencies that have driven end-to-end transformation in how small businesses conduct their operations. India today is amongst the fastest growing Fintech markets in the world, being the 3rd largest FinTech ecosystem, India has the highest Fintech adoption rate globally (87%). Razorpay also believes & foresees Indian fintech as the default service provider for the world that can make a difference by bringing customized digital solutions for customers beyond the geographies clubbed with best-in-class fintech technologies.