Walmart India continues its push to help create more convenient access to digital payment capabilities amongst the traditionally cash-dependent very small business sector. As some readers may recall, last year Walmart integrated India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) as a payment tool for their registered e-commerce platform members. UPI is a mobile real-time payments system managed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). This piece, posted in PaymentsSource, discusses a partnership between Walmart and PhonePe a mobile payments app that is part of the 2007 e-commerce startup FlipKart, which is now majority-owned by Walmart.
‘Walmart India will partner with the PhonePe network to offer a mobile payment option at Walmart’s B2B cash-and-carry stores. Registered members of Walmart India’s 23 Best Price Stores across the country will be able to pay for purchases from the PhonePe app on their mobile phones, through a linked bank account or from a credit or debit card in the PhonePe wallet.’
A key target in this announcement is the segment of mom and pop retailers in India, referred to as ‘kiranas’. These shops seek to stock up for their goods via Walmart’s e-commerce site, but often do not have a credit card relationship. So the PhonePe app will allow these small businesses to pay direct via a bank account without the need to enter account details. This is a continuance of the move towards a digital economy in India, an initiative that started several years back, including the demonetization of certain selected banknotes in 2016.
‘PhonePe’s digital payments software complements other physical and digital payment options at Best Price Stores and makes a Unified Payments Interface, or those from a bank account, available for the first time at these cash-and-carry stores. “We have been working closely with the Walmart India team to deepen our ties, and the launch of PhonePe’s payment solution in stores and the B2B commerce platform is a step in that direction,” Sameer Nigam, CEO and founder of PhonePe, said in the release. “With this partnership, we will be able to help these businesses digitize all of their payment transactions — from taking payments from customers to paying at Best Price Stores for their own purchases.” ‘
Overview by Steve Murphy, Director, Commercial and Enterprise Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group