Airtel Payments Bank plans Rs 3,000 crore investment

Airtel retail shop
Airtel Payments Bank today committed an initial investment of Rs 3,000 crore to develop a pan India banking network and digital payments ecosystem.

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today officially launched India’s first Payments Bank at a press event in Delhi.

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Earlier, Airtel Payments Bank was available in Rajasthan, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh via its pilot projects. The company received the permission to set up digital payment bank in 2016.

Airtel Payments Bank aims to connect five million retail shops, allowing customers to make cashless payments for goods and services across India.

The main advantage is that Airtel Payments Bank will have a pan-India network of 250,000 banking points (Airtel retail stores) across 29 states from day one. This is more than the total number of ATMs in the country.
Airtel Payments Bank launch by Arun Jaitley
Photo Caption: Arun Jaitley, union minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs launching Airtel Payments Bank at an event in New Delhi.

Also present are Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman, Bharti Enterprises (to the right of FM); Uday Kotak, executive vice chairman and MD, Kotak Mahindra Bank (to the left of FM); Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO (India & South Asia), Bharti Airtel (extreme left); and Shashi Arora, MD and CEO of Airtel Payments Bank (extreme right).

Airtel Payments Bank added more than one million customers during the pilot phase in 2016. The company rolled out several customer friendly programs to attract savings account holders during the pilot.

The company launched Airtel Payments Bank app and Online Card in association with MasterCard for convenient banking and cashless payments.

Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman, Bharti Enterprises; Uday Kotak, executive vice chairman & MD, Kotak Mahindra Bank; Gopal Vittal, MD & CEO (India & South Asia), Bharti Airtel; and Shashi Arora, MD & CEO, Airtel Payments Bank were present at the event.

“Airtel has been at the forefront of India’s digital transformation and has empowered over 260 million customers with affordable telecom services. With Airtel Payments Bank, we are starting another important chapter in our journey, with the potential to truly transform lives and contribute to financial inclusion in the country,” said Sunil Bharti Mittal.

Customers can utilize over 250,000 Airtel retail stores, which will function as banking points, to open savings accounts, deposit and withdraw cash — starting today.

Airtel Payments Bank will not charge any processing fee from its customers and merchants partners for digital transactions. India government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is pushing for a digital economy.

Airtel Payments Bank has rolled out its app for Android and iOS – accessible through MyAirtel app. Customers need to install MyAirtel app on their smartphone for accessing Airtel Payments Bank services. Customers will get access to MasterCard powered online card to make payments across all online merchants accepting MasterCard.

Airtel, India’s #1 telecom operator based on subscribers and revenue, said it will leverage its 260 million mobile customers and educate them on the benefits of digital payments.