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WhatsApp to hasten payments services to 200 million Indians

Author: Heena Sharma
by Heena Sharma
Posted: May 30, 2018
hdfc bank The messaging app will partner HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and Axis Bank to process the transfers, and State Bank of India will join once it has the necessary systems in placeTechnology News: Facebook is set to offer its WhatsApp payment services to the whole of India as early as next week in an attempt to win market share, even though its partners aren’t all ready, said people familiar with the matter.

The messaging app will partner HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and Axis Bank to process the transfers, and State Bank of India will join once it has the necessary systems in place, the people said. Facebook was aiming for a full rollout with four partners but decided to go ahead with just three as its rivals were racing ahead, the people said, asking not to be named as the information isn’t public.

The entry of Whats app into India’s payments space has been likened to We Chat, which reshaped payments in China when it expanded beyond messaging. The pilot version of Whats App Pay — started with 1 million users in February — received rave reviews, threatening the market share of incumbents Google Tez and Alibaba-backed Paytm, which lack the benefits of a social network.

"WhatsApp has a great starting point: a monopoly in chat," said Vivek Belgavi, leader for financial technology at PwC India. "High engagement makes it a credible competition." More than 200 million Indians already use WhatsApp messaging, equivalent to 60 percent of the US population and a daily active usage that Forrester estimates to be about 20 times higher than Paytm’s.

Emails to representatives of WhatsApp, State Bank of India, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and Axis Bank weren’t immediately answered.

Global search engine giant Google on Tuesday integrated its mobile payment app Tez with the nation's largest lender State Bank of India (SBI). With this, Tez users will be able to create an SBI UPI identity — @oksbi and make payments and gain access to exclusive SBI offers.

SBI and Google will work towards a wider adoption of digital payments and focus on building unique propositions for users and merchants, including specially curated offers.

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Author: Heena Sharma

Heena Sharma

Flag of India
India

Member since: Apr 26, 2018
Published articles: 67

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