British International Investment

Au Financiers

South AsiaFinancial services

Au Financiers was founded by entrepreneur Sanjay Agarwal in 1996. It started with one branch in Jaipur but today it has around 200 branches across the country and focuses on lending to the low-income section of the population.

In 2017, Au Financiers converted itself to a Small Finance Bank from a Non-Banking Finance Company (NBFC), changing its name to AU Small Finance Bank.

This investment was made when British International Investment was named CDC Group.

We have now exited this investment. This is what we achieved.

Achieved impact

Au Small Finance Bank, previously known as Au Financiers, is a leading small finance bank in India in India, financing first-time rural and semi-urban entrepreneurs in under-banked areas. Its core business is collateralized loans to finance the acquisition of commercial vehicles such as tractors, trucks and vans. It also provides car loans, financing for two- and three-wheelers, affordable housing mortgages and SME loans.

In 2012, we provided a $30 million, five-year loan to the company alongside FMO. This loan helped the company grow its assets under management.

The company started as a non-bank finance company but was one of the early recipients of the Small Finance Bank Licence in India.

Expected impact

CDC invested $20 million in Au Financiers in 2013.

Our investment is part of a joint facility of up to $60 million that has been led by FMO, the Netherlands’ DFI. GuarantCo Ltd, an infrastructure focused guarantee fund, also invested $20 million.

Our investment will be used to expand AUF’s commercial vehicle finance business, and to help the company expand its lending to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The facility will support the creation of 2,000 jobs in AUF itself. It will also provide funding and support for up to 22,000 entrepreneurs and SMEs in rural regions that are not able to access the traditional banking sector, helping to improve their livelihoods.

For example, AUF specialises in loans for commercial vehicles – trucks, vans, tractors, cars and three-wheelers – which are used to help small-scale farmers both boost agricultural production and transport goods further afield.

The company also provides business finance to shopkeepers, manufacturers and traders with a successful track record, but who lack the formal income documentation required to access traditional finance.

Reporting and Complaints Mechanism

The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism allows anyone outside BII to report alleged breaches of the business integrity or environmental and social provisions of BII’s Policy on Responsible Investing. This includes breaches made by BII, a BII investee, or a portfolio company of a fund in which BII has invested. The Reporting and Complaints Mechanism Rules are available here. Reports and complaints can be submitted by email to [email protected] or by mail. See more details on our Reporting and Complaints Mechanism here.

For any other general enquiries contact us at [email protected]

  • Key facts

    Last updated

    When the last quarterly update of the website database occurred.

    March 2024
    Project number

    An identifier number shared by investments in the same project.


    The current status of the investment (green flag for active and red flag for exited).


    The geographical region where the country is located. We currently invest in Africa, South Asia, South East Asia and the Caribbean. In 2023, BII’s investment mandate was extended allowing it to invest in regional funds linked to Ukraine, with the majority of activity expected to begin post-war. Investments outside these regions were made prior to 2012 under previous investment mandates.

    South Asia

    We prioritise those sectors that facilitate development and need our capital the most. Our priority sectors contribute towards many of the Sustainable Development Goals. They range from investing in the power infrastructure that will provide people with better access to electricity, to investing in financial institutions that direct capital to the individuals and businesses that need it the most.

    Financial services

    We provide capital in the following ways: directly – through direct equity, direct debt, guarantees and other non-intermediated financial instruments; and indirectly – principally through investment funds.

    For direct investments and fund investments, this is the date BII committed capital to the investments. This is typically the date on which legal agreements are signed by all parties.

    For the portfolio companies of our fund investments, this is the date (either the month or the quarter) on which the fund committed capital to the portfolio company.

    For direct equity investments, this is the date at which British International Investment exited the investment.

    For debt investments, this is the date at which the final debt repayment was made.

    For funds, this is the date at which the fund was terminated.

    For underlying fund investments, this is the date at which the fund manager exited the investment.

    The total amount committed, per financial instrument, per investment, on the date BII becomes subject to a binding legal obligation to provide funding or assume a contingent liability. This information is provided in US dollars.

    For direct investments, this is the amount that BII has committed to the business or project. For fund investments, this is the amount BII has committed to the fund.

    The currency in which the investment was made.

    Investment type :
    Start date :
    March 2013
    End date :
    March 2018
    Amount :
    Currency of investment :

    The company or investment fund’s place of incorporation.


Subscribe to receive our latest news and updates