Receivables and supply chain finance (SCF) provider Harbor has announced it is expanding into India, as it works to roll out its offering to businesses in developing markets.

The Miami-headquartered company is launching its India operations through a franchise partnership with Blue Ocean, a Mumbai-based asset manager and investment advisor focused on working capital and trade finance.

As part of the agreement, Blue Ocean will act as a local originator and operate under the name Habor India. The expansion into the Asian market follows Harbor’s launch in Mexico under a similar franchise arrangement in February.

“In the case of Mexico and India, our local operations are managed exclusively by our franchisee that takes funding and risk participation in the trade finance programmes originated in their market. This allows for more efficient origination and risk management/due diligence with skin in the game,” a Harbor spokesperson tells GTR.

“The partners leverage our branding and marketing support as well as our funding, integrated risk management system and product modules like receivables and supply chain finance,” they add.

Harbor launched in 2018 as an SCF provider for the middle market, serving buyers in North America, Latin America and Western Europe, as well as their domestic and international suppliers.

Over time, the firm has grown its user base to also include suppliers in developing markets, namely Greater China, Southeast Asia, South America, as well as about a dozen such companies in India.

Though working capital finance is an increasingly crowded market, the company is seeking to differentiate itself by targeting smaller suppliers that are often overlooked by larger buyers, using technology to simplify the process of onboarding companies in the second and third tiers of a supply chain.

Meanwhile, in the past year, Harbor has broadened its offering for supplier companies by rolling out a receivables finance product.

Harbor’s spokesperson says it has seen increasing demand for receivables finance support from its existing customer base, as well as inquiries from prospective new clients.

As well as offering SMEs an alternative source of working capital, Harbor also provides a platform for retail investors, decentralised finance protocols and traditional market participants to support such activities and earn risk-adjusted returns.