After years of trials and talks, it seems as though WhatsApp is finally pulling the trigger to launch payment service in its app in India. As per the latest news, Facebook-owned Company has announced that it will collaborate with numerous partners like financial institutes and banks in India to provide low-income individuals with easy access to products like microcredit, insurance, and pension.
India is WhatsApp’s biggest market in the world with over 400 million active users. The company has already collaborated with banks including HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank to communicate with consumers via automated messages on its business service.
Sources cite that the social media giant will also support pilot projects to solve challenges related to the distribution of financial products in ruler areas.
Speaking on which, Abhijeet Bose, Head of WhatsApp India said that the company would collaborate with more banks in the forthcoming years to help simplify and expand banking services, particularly to lower-income and rural segments.
Over the next two-three years, WhatsApp will work with these institutes to help low-income communities and give them easy access to micro-credit, insurance, and pensions, he added.
In 2018, WhatsApp recruited Abhijeet Bose, Chief Executive and Co-founder of payment company Ezetap, a move that indicated the company’s ambitions in the payments space. Since then, the company has been running its payment feature in India with limited users, waiting for regulatory approval on issues like data localization, ahead of launch.
WhatsApp said that it has complied with the nation’s requests to store data of customers locally.
Before the past few months, WhatsApp’s parent company Facebook invested USD 5.7 billion in Reliance Industries’ digital unit. Reliable sources cite that this move was in line with Facebook’s ambition to integrate WhatsApp payment feature with Reliance’s retail business, which aims to cater to millions of small shops across India.