Mumbai, July 11: Popular messaging service provider, Whatsapp, received permission from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) for allowing Unified Payments Interface (UPI) payments. The permission allows Whatsapp to do so after entering multi-bank partnerships.
UPI Payments will allow for users of the messaging application to make in-app payments and purchases, as well as transfer money to other users. According to reports, the Facebook-owned company was in talks with the NPCI for quite some time, so as to launch its own payments business.
Confirming the approval extended to Whatsapp for UPI payments, NPCI’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer A P Hota is reported to have said, “We have permitted multi-bank partnership as Whatsapp did not want all transactions routed via one bank when payment loads are high. They are now talking actively to leading banks now.”
Some of the banks that WhatsApp is looking to partner with, include Axis Bank, ICICI Bank and Punjab National Bank among others. Hota also added, ” Players like WhatsApp, Google are very large in size and thus partnering with multiple banks makes sense to ensure smooth payments process. Google is now waiting the Reserve Bank of India’s approval to go live on UPI.”
Meanwhile, other companies that are actively looking at initiating UPI payments include Amazo, Google, Uber and Facebook itself. There are currently 50 banks on the UPI Payment service. Out of them 37 also have their own applications to service customers’ online transaction request.
Hota had, in an earlier briefing expressed dissatisfaction over the lack of enthusiasm for UPI shown by some Indian banks. He had said, “Some of the banks instead of applying, have asked their third party service providers to develop the app and make their bank as the acquiring bank.. Truecaller, PhonePe, Chiller- there are sixteen such big fin-tech companies.” Further adding, “If our banks bring all their might, there is no need for such players, but our banks do not take interest.”