The ultimate annual gathering of fintech leaders in India at the DLAI Conclave 2024, concluded today as a resounding success with over 650 delegates at the event. Under the overarching theme of "Fintech Evolution: Innovate, Comply, Embrace and Succeed," this year’s conclave emerged as a transformative platform for fostering innovation and collaboration in the fintech sector. Hosted by the Digital Lenders Association Of India (DLAI), it once again proved to be the most dynamic forum for industry leaders to engage in an unparalleled exchange of ideas and insights, driving the evolution of India's financial landscape.

At the forum, DLAI also announced a collaboration with IIMA Ventures and MSC to support fintech startups under the Financial Inclusion Lab. DLAI’s partnership with Financial Inclusion Lab aims to facilitate the creation of impactful use cases by fostering collaboration among members, and collectively develop solutions to enhance on-the-ground impact. 

The event commenced with a welcome note from Jatinder Handoo, CEO, DLAI, followed by a speech by Manish Lunia, President, DLAI and Founder, Flexiloans. They spoke about the importance of compliance and governance for the digital lending sector and how strengthening of regulatory vigil on the sector contributes towards a stronger growth regime.

The first session of the day was a powerful keynote speech by Sivasubramanian Ramann, Chairman and Managing Director of Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), unveiling the financial inclusion scenario in India. He emphasised that the future of lending will be led by digital lending, and it will play an important role in making relevant credit accessible to the underbanked sector.

Interactive Firesides chats and panel discussions featured esteemed speakers from the sector and offered insights on digital lending dynamics as well as food for thought for the audience.

Fireside chat, titled ‘Fintech Jugalbandi - The New Paradigm of Lending on Public Infrastructure’, was an insightful discussion with Sharad Sharma, iSPIRIT and T.Koshy, ONDC, moderated by Lizzie Chapman.

In the second half of the day, Rajnish Kumar, former chairman of SBI and Alok Mittal, CEO, Indifi spoke about the relevance of innovation in emerging fintech firms and their nimbleness. He added that large banks and regulated financial institutions bring in institutional capital whereas fintechs bring speed and convenience, thus a collaborative approach in the sector can be beneficial for all.
 
There were six panel discussions throughout the day, on topics ranging from regulations, investment, and product innovations. The panel titles and moderators were:

1) ‘Show me the Money - Navigating the supply side for Digital Lending through cycles’. Moderated by Nishant Jasapara, Credit Saison India.

2) "UPI Empower: Pre-Sanctioned Credit Revolutionizes Lending" delved into the untapped potential of UPI-enabled lending and explored strategies to enhance its impact. Moderated by Anuj Kacker, Cofounder, Freo.

3) Lending Fast and Slow - Beyond vanity metrics, balancing risk, and doing the hard stuff. All about key metrics for management teams to monitor and prioritize through periods of turbulence. Moderated by Gaurav Hinduja, Cofounder and Managing Director, Axio.

4) ‘Apna Time Aayega- All about investor views of the sector, funding winter, prospects for digital lending and more. Moderated by Shiv Chatterjee, Cofounder and Managing Director, DMI Finance.

5) No Time to Die: How Digital Lending teams learned to survive, stay in the game, and thrive. Moderated by Sashank Rishyashringa, Cofounder and Managing Director, Axio.

6) Great Power, Great Responsibility - Sustainably going after the massive opportunity ahead, all about the interplay between regulation and the business -scale and sustainability. Moderated by Jatinder Handoo, CEO, DLAI.
 
Under the Knowledge Series, DLAI also unveiled two whitepapers in collaboration with ecosystem partners.
 
The first paper titled, ‘Charting New Horizons for Fintech Lending’, was authored by Experian. The report provides a detailed analysis of the fintech sector growth in the country.

The Second paper, titled Fintech Round-up 2023-24’, released by Khaitan & Co covers some of the key regulatory changes observed in the past year that have had an impact on the sector.
 
Throughout the day Industry experts led workshops on various nuances of the digital lending landscape, emphasising its exponential growth and the critical role of insurance in shaping lending portfolios' profitability.

DLAI Conclave 2024 has set the tone for a high-compliance, high-growth scenario for digital lenders. The sector is also looking forward to a well-structured Self-Regulatory-Organization (SRO) that will further provide the path for structured growth. With that, it was a wrap for DLAI Conclave 2024.