KOLKATA: ESAF Microfinance, which will be kicking off its small finance bank journey in a fortnight, is looking to ramp up capital ahead of the transition.

The Thrissur-based company is in talks with investors such as insurance companies and mutual funds to raise Rs 500 crore in non-convertible debentures, along with another Rs 150 crore in commercial papers.

ESAF Chairman K Paul Thomas said the company expects to close the issues by the end of this week. The lender has already mobilized Rs 180 crore in commercial papers last week.

“If we can ramp up capital before the conversion, we can focus on scale and retail liability franchise development in small finance bank from the beginning,” Thomas told ET.

ESAF will officially launch small finance bank operation on March 17 after a week’s of trail run starting from March 10.

The lender…