Digital wallets and payment gateways have revolutionized the concept of payment in India. Be it a high-end retail outlet or your kirana grocery store, the QR code of a digital wallet company never slips your notice as a telltale sign testifying that cash payment is a secondary option now.
But, PayTM’s transition from a purely digital wallet to a payments bank raises a question — are all digital wallets heading the Payments Bank way?
‘Not a Bank, the Idea Is to Build Banking Solutions’
When asked whether the way ahead for a digital wallet or a payment gateway is to open a payments bank, the other leaders of the space sang a different tune.
Instead, they have clearly expressed their wish to offer various banking solutions.
“In the long run, PayU plans to develop digital banking solutions for India. That is one area we want to grow in and in due course it will become more relevant to Indian consumers. We will focus on providing all services from holding money to completing payments transactions for individuals. Our aim is to bring unmatched payment technology and a conventional banking service together, making us one of its kind in the history of digital banking in India. This plan has the potential to disrupt the digital banking landscape and set a new trajectory for the financial sector,” said Shailaz Nag, Co-founder and COO at PayU India.
Mobikwik To Offer Loans and Enter the Insurance Industry
PayTM’s long-standing rival Mobikwik, too, doesn’t see itself developing into a payments bank. “Being a bank doesn’t work to our advantage and we feel that there is better value in offer banking services by partnering with other financial institutions, banks and Non Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs). We are looking to expand our services by offering loans and other financial services. We will offer our users a credit line of INR 1 lakh in tie-ups with banks and NBFCs. MobiKwik will also offer other insurance related services to top consumers and millions of shopkeepers and get into the auto insurance and cashless mediclaim segments,” said Vineet Singh, Chief Business Officer, MobiKwik.
Challenges of a Digital Wallet in Today’s Times
With cyber attacks frequently making headlines, security becomes a big issue and when it comes to digital wallets, keeping users’ transaction information safe is a priority.
“With cyber crime, sustainability can be a challenge but it can be overcome. Mobikwik, being PCI-DSS and ISO27001Certified, takes care of the various information security measures to ensure the security of an application and protect its business from emerging threats and frauds,” added Singh.
Faster Payments and App-based Banks for Growth
With ever-evolving technology, it’s of paramount importance for digital wallets to be on their toes and evolve with the changing times. Talking about their expansion plans on the cusp of the fintech revolution, Nag of PayU said, “We are looking at increasing our numbers with investment and acquisition opportunities to fuel our growth and achieve our $100 million target for FY 2017- 18. Right now, we will be looking at three key areas of growth — mainly faster payments, credit and digital or app-based banks.”