Decoding CRED’s FY22 numbers and latest shareholding


After years of being criticized for a missing business model, fintech startup CRED saw a significant revenue jump during the fiscal ending in March 2022, according to its consolidated financial statement filed with the RoC last week.

The Kunal Shah-led firm’s operating revenue rose 4.4X to Rs 393.6 crore during FY22, in contrast to the Rs 88.6 crore the company made in FY21, its financial statement showed. For background, CRED’s operating income ballooned 756X in the last two fiscals as it made only Rs 52 lakh from operations in FY20.


CRED makes revenue from facilitating rental transactions, interest income on the p2p loans facilitated by lending partners, processing fee from servicing of loans and sale of advertising space, and listing fees. It also acts as a technology platform to distribute coupons and vouchers of different brands, aggregate credit card payment options, and allow rental payments and merchant transactions via credit cards.

The firm claims that its registered users grew 50% to 11.2 million in FY22 from 7.5 million in FY21 and 2.8 million in FY20.

During FY22, it also earned Rs 29 crore worth of finance income which took its overall revenue to Rs 422.6 crore. It’s worth noting that CRED hasn’t given a revenue break up for FY22.

Entrackr previously wrote about CRED’s key financial numbers in October from sourced documents, but the current filings provide detailed information on the company’s expense breakups.

Following its IPL campaigns during FY22, marketing, and promotional expenses turned out to be the largest cost element for CRED, contributing 57.3% to the total expenditure. This cost escalated 3X to Rs 975.8 crore during FY22 from Rs 324 crore in FY21.


To harness growth CRED hired more resources, as a result, its employee benefits expense shot up 2.3X to Rs 307.6 crore during the last fiscal from Rs 134.7 crore in FY21. Significantly, this cost also includes share based payments to employees (ESOP expenses) of Rs 112.5 crore. During FY22, CRED announced that it bought back ESOPs worth Rs 100 crore from employees.

CRED incurred Rs 158.6 crore on payment processing and other direct expenses (including payment gateway charges of Rs 139.7 crore). These costs climbed 2.7X during the year from Rs 57.93 crore in FY21.

Further, the firm’s IT (software & licenses) and communication costs spiked 2.4X to Rs 137 crore in FY22 while legal & professional fees surged 2.8X to Rs 87.5 crore. The surge in legal expenses can also be attributed to a couple of acquisitions — liquor purchase and delivery startup HipBar and expense management startup Happay — during the last fiscal year.

All that meant total expenses swelled 2.7X to Rs 1,702 crore in FY22 as compared to Rs 619 crore in FY21. Cash outflows from operating activities surged 3.5X to Rs 1,605 crore during the same period.

Akin to the rise in expenditure, CRED’s losses also hiked over two folds to Rs 1,279.6 crore during the last fiscal against Rs 524 crore in FY21. Moreover, its outstanding losses have mounted to Rs 2,225 crore at the end of FY22.

As of June 2022, Kunal Shah was the largest stakeholder in the company with around 12% stake. QED Innovation Labs(owned by Shah), Sequoia, and Ribbit Capital hold 10.7%, 10.4%, and 9% respectively while Tiger Global owned 6.5% of the cap table. CRED also had an ESOP Pool of 11.6%.


Gemini Investments, Alpha Wave, and DST Partners commanded around 5% each until the above mentioned period. CRED also counts individuals such as Tanmay Bhatt, Ankit Nagori (Curefoods), Deepak Abbot (Indiagold), Pankaj Gupta, and Arpan Sheth on its cap table.

As per Fintrackr’s analysis, CRED’s EBITDA margin and ROCE strengthened to -298.80% and -42.65%. On a unit level, the firm spent Rs 4.3 to earn a rupee of operating income in FY22.


CRED was one of the top funded companies with $466 million across two rounds in FY22. The firm also raised another $140 million in June last year when it was valued at around $6.4 billion.

With one of the widest cap tables around, it is obvious that CRED has believers where it matters. The revenue surge that has started in the last two years has also started to provide detractors some clarity on terms of what the model is. With over 11 million users now, the firm will soon hit a ceiling in acquiring new users, if it stays with its high credit score criteria. That means, a much stronger test of user loyalty and stickiness, as it seeks to offer more products and services to this premium layer. For all the professed belief in brand building, the firm might soon need to pull back on its frenetic advertising and promotions that have been led by a mass media push including cricket sponsorships. It might discover that with high penetration achieved in its target segment, those marketing spends will deliver a better return from these ‘captive’ users.

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