Fusion Microfinance: A Decade-Old Voyage in Women Empowerment

Devesh Sachdev | Founder & CEO | Fusion Microfinance
Devesh Sachdev | Founder & CEO | Fusion Microfinance

Rural India along with tier three, four and five towns have been considered as significant contributors to the growth of Indian economic story over the last fifteen to twenty years. The goods and services with respect to the agricultural activities carried throughout these areas have consistently enhanced, ensuring an all-around resurgence in activities across the economic plain in the last two decades. NBFC’s have played a pioneering role in catering to the credit requirements of millions of customers in these areas both in the secured and unsecured lending landscape. Today, these NBFCs have a place of pride in having a large pie of the Indian credit market. It has also evolved by offering ‘one window’ and para banking services to customers at their doorstep, enabling larger parts of the country to be brought under the umbrella of financial services and as a result, the gains have been more evident. NBFC credit as a percentage of India’s GDP is approximately 13%. Various estimates put NBFCs catering to 30-45% of the total credit in India. Recently, a special category of NBFCs, the MFIs(Micro Finance Institutions) are proving to be a frontrunner in Inclusive Growth. Along with a customer base of around 3.8 crores to an asset book size of approx. Rs. 1,87,000 crores, it is growing at an impressive rate of more than 35% .
One such company enlisting its growth in the said MFIs is Fusion Microfinance Pvt. Ltd. Established in January 2010, Fusion operates on the time-tested Joint Liability Group (JLG) model with 100% women clients from rural and semi-rural areas. Headquartered in Delhi, Fusion is providing financial services through 524 branches that spread across 18 Indian states. It believes in robust business practices, transparent policies expressed towards the Customerfocused Approach with regard to the clientele. Fusion primarily works in rural and semi-urban areas providing financial services to women belonging to the economically and socially deprived section of the society. Over 85% of the active loan clients of Fusion belong to the marginalized communities such as ST/SC and OBC. It is providing financial services in 205 backward districts out of 254 operational districts.
Handling The Reigns 
Founder and CEODevesh Sachdev is an XLRI post graduate with sixteen years of experience in the service industry. He started his career with Citi group in 1996 prior to Fusion’s origin. In the past, he has worked in capacity of a Director in BSA Group of Companies where he successfully led the growth of BSA to a pan India foothold with diversified service offerings. Across all the diverse experiences, his expertise lies in building businesses, managing large teams in a cost-efficient manner, strategy, key relationship management and handling all dimensions of the business. Under his leadership, Fusion has grown into one of the leading microfinance institutions and continues to expand its operations. He was on the Board of MFIN, a Self-Regulatory Organization for NBFC-MFIs. MFIN works closely with regulators and other key stakeholders. It plays an active part in the larger financial inclusions dialogue through the medium of microfinance. In 2015, he attended and successfully completed a Strategic leadership program at Harvard Business School.
Reaching for the Skies 
There are some ethics and principles that Fusion cares and implements throughout its organization and operations which are stated below – 

  • Integrity: “We adhere to ethical standards to ensure integrity, transparency, independence & accountability in dealing with all stakeholders,” says Team Fusion.
  • Responsibility: “Growing with responsibility, we are very high on governance mechanism, strategic risk management framework and well-diversified portfolios,” tells Devesh.
  • Passionate People and Working Culture: “Passionate & strong team and positive workplace culture fosters an environment where employees feel connected and contribute to achieving,” he adds further.
  • Humility: “Fusion leads with humility. Continuously evolving to achieve excellence, believes in a collaborative effort, collectively takes its employees forward, values stakeholders, appreciate the success and accept the challenges,” opines Devesh.
  • Exceptional Client Focus: “Putting the ‘client first’ has been a quintessential Fusion credo across years and the focus has always been to provide seamless services to our clients across the length and breadth of the country,” adds Fusion team.

By keeping the above principles in mind, the Fusion team provides its clients with optimum services. By connecting with Fusion, the 1.5 million women customers across the country, came under the larger ‘organized financial umbrella’ and mainstream credit line. They are assured of a long term partner in growth and not a fairweather friend. Also, they received a chance to upgrade themselves, be it on Financial Literacy Level or learning vocational subjects under the organization’s well-entrenched CSR program. The clients are encouraged to become entrepreneurs in their own right leading to a better standard of living for them and the family. This helps them in providing better education, health and better stature in society. Through this process, Fusion is being able to create more jobs in its catchment area leading to better overall development in the rural ecosystem.
Challenge Accepted! Industry Disrupted… 
From all these years, the company has turned opportunities into achievements. 1.5 million women clients from rural areas depict the vast customer loyalty Fusion has. Achieving an exceptional feat in employee satisfaction, Fusion has entered the top quadrant among BFSI organizations with a score of 78% in the Employee Satisfaction Survey, conducted by Aon Hewitt. “We successfully launched our mobile app, mShakti,” states Devesh emphasizing on the company’s digital journey. This unique solution has significantly improved customer on-boarding process, TAT for the loan processing has reduced, improved inventory management of loan documents and secured data management in terms of keeping digital copies of all the documents safe. The company has taken steps to strengthen a strong risk management framework which seeks to proactively identify, address and mitigate existing and emerging risks. The firm is supported by diversified lenders which includes private banks, mutual funds and other financial institutions. The future aspirations of the company includes:

  • Effective client life-cycle engagement. Providing need-based flexible financial solutions.
  • Aspiring to serve 5 million customers in the next 3 to 4 years through PAN India coverage.
  • Continuous investment in innovative technologies in order to provide a seamless experience to the clients.
  • Build a ‘Best Place to Work’ platform. The Plan is to recruit 5000 plus members, to make a strong ‘Fusion Team’.
  • Scale-up responsibly and explore new products. Use of data analytics for insightful business decisions and risk mitigation while maintaining a continuous focus on human capital.


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