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WhatsApp takes massive step to push PM Modi’s ‘Digital India’, ties-up with top banks for its payment feature

WhatsApp ties up hands with Axis Bank. (Reuters)

WhatsApp last month had received a nod from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). With this, the Facebook-owned app has entered the league of Tez, BHIM and other UPI models which enable digital payments to its users. Interestingly according to a report by Indian Express in February, the digital payments market saw transactions worth Rs 56,600 crore last year. Now, the messaging-app which has over 1.5 billion active users has taken one more step in the direction of pushing ‘Digital India’.

WhatsApp and Axis Bank, India’s third largest private sector bank have tied hands and it means the customers would soon be able to process payments over the popular chatting application ‘WhatsApp’. The bank also termed the Unified Payment Interface (UPI) as a “huge opportunity”.

Rajiv Anand, Axis Bank Executive Director – Retail Banking in his official statement said,”UPI we are the market leaders in terms of innovation, and we do believe that UPI is a huge opportunity. We are working in terms of creating a differentiated environment for our customers.”

When asked about the launch of the new feature by WhatsApp, Anand said that the messaging-app is currently running the beta version which will be out in a month or two.

Bank officials also said that Axis Bank enjoys 20 percent market share in the UPI space. The bank is investing in newer digital payment methods significantly and interestingly over 66 percent of the transactions of the bank were made via digital mode in Q3 FY18 as compared to 52 percent in Q1 Fy17. AxisPay UPI has touched over 10.4 million registrations since its launch with around 65 lakh Virtual Payment Addresses.

Axis bank is also focussing on debit and credit cards. Apart from Axis Bank, WhatsApp also has tied up with ICICI bank which is India’s second-largest private sector lenders.

Here what WhatsApp Payments feature is all about:

WhatsApp Payments is a UPI-based feature which will become yet another digital payments platform in the country. The new feature will enable users with a UPI ID to send money to friend and families directly on the app.  The new feature can be accessed by visiting WhatsApp Settings > Payments > Send Payment > Send to UPI ID. 

Source: Financial Express