Connecting Businesses with Opportunities in India - An Online Chit Fund to Raise Credit Score

A new website aimed at the NRI community in the US, called was launched today, August 29th 2017. is bringing the concept of the Chit Fund, which most NRIs are familiar with from back in India, to the US market with a unique twist of allowing participants not just the ability to save money but also build their credit score at the same time. This dual benefit of saving money and building credit should make this a very popular tool for the NRI community. Since its beta launch in March, more than 700 people have already signed up.

Unlike modern banking, Chit is an absolutely Indian concept and traces back from an ancient history. Legend has it that Chit Funds originated in India 1,000 years ago during the regime of King Chandragupta of the Maurya Dynasty. The nucleus of the concept is based on mutual trust, confidence, and cooperation. The basic principle is “No one stands to lose and all stand to gain!” This innovative concept was exported all over the World and over centuries served the needs of millions of people.

A quick primer on how Chit Funds work in India: A few people, say 6, would agree to save a certain amount, say $100, every month. The first month, the 6 people would get together and pool their money which would be $600. The names of all the members would be written on a chit (hence the name Chit Fund) and placed in a pot. One chit would be drawn and that person would receive the entire $600. Next month, they would meet again and pool their $600 and another chit would be drawn from the same pot. This process would continue for 6 months and everyone would save $600 and receive the same amount. It is a very simple but powerful savings mechanism. Due to their nature, Chit Funds were local where members of the community would regularly meet and pool their money. is bringing the power of technology and modern finance to this proven, centuries-old method. Moreover, it has improved the Chit Fund concept and brought it to the 21st century. It can now build a virtual community so distance is no longer a barrier. It uses credit risk tools to assign risk ratings. It also increase the amount that the members contribute every time so if you wait longer, you get more money. Thus everyone selects the time when they want to receive the money rather than drawing chits from a pot. So as a result of these improvements, at you can borrow cheaper, save faster, and invest better!

And it gets even better. As everyone in the US knows, having a good credit score is invaluable. It is necessary to buy a car, a house, even get your cell phone contract and in many cases employers do a background and credit check before offering a job. Now building a good credit score is not easy and takes time. Many people have to take out secured loans just to build a credit score. Participating in has a huge benefit, as it reports all contributions to credit agencies, participants get to build their credit score while saving. So now imagine, being able to build your credit not just through borrowing but also through saving and investing!

The benefits of participation in extend to many different people. Imagine someone new to the country with no credit history. Well that person can join and start saving as little as $25 weekly and build up their credit score. With no credit history, you start with a small limit and your limit increases over time. On the other hand, other people who already have an established credit history can use to earn very attractive return on their money and get a boost to their credit score at the same time. Now, who doesn't need a periodic boost to their credit! Furthermore, if you have a good credit, you get higher limits so can participate in more chits at the same time.

The credit bureaus in the US have recognized that making agreed upon payments to a Chit Fund is no different than making payments for any other loan. NY Times recently published an article about an NRI who was able to raise her credit score from zero to 789 in 26 months using a Chit Fund.

“In Lending Circles, a Roundabout Way to a Higher Credit Score”

Aamer Shahab, the CEO of said that “We are excited to bring this powerful community savings tool that has stood the test of time for over 1,000 years adapted to the needs of people in the 21st century to the NRI community. We hope the community realizes the benefits of saving, investing and building their credit using”

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