WhatsApp gets approval to launch payments feature in India

Platform News: Opening the WhatsApp app on a smartphone

WhatsApp has obtained approval to roll out its obligations service in India starting with 20 million consumers, the nation’s flagship obligations processor has said, providing the Facebook-owned app a entry into a crowded digital payments space.

WhatsApp, which has over 400 million consumers in India, its main economy, will compete with Alphabet Inc’s Google Pay, Softbank- and Alibaba-backed Paytm and Walmart’s PhonePe.

The Menlo Park, California-based firm had been attempting to comply with Indian regulations, such as data storage norms that need all payments-related information to be stored locally.

“WhatsApp can expand its Unified Payments Interface (UPI) user base in a graded manner starting with a maximum registered user base of 20 million,” that the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) said in a statement.

Set up in 2008, the NPCI is a non-profit firm which counts 50 banks since its shareholders, including the State Bank of India, Citibank and HSBC.

Online transactions, lending and e-wallet services have been growing rapidly in India, directed by a government push to make the nation’s cash-loving merchants and consumers embrace electronic payments.

UPI processed over 1.8 billion transactions in September, up from over 1.6 billion the previous month, according to data on the NPCI site.

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The team at Platform Executive hope you have enjoyed the ‘WhatsApp gets approval to launch payments feature in India‘ article. Initial reporting via our official content partners at Thomson Reuters. Reporting by Sudarshan Varadhan. Editing by Dan Grebler.

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