At the launch, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley lauds the payments platform’s role in enabling financial inclusion in the country.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday launched Paytm Payments Bank, the mobile-first bank that is available in its beta version. Offering zero fee on online transactions, the bank will soon launch 31 branches and 3,000 customer points across India.
The mobile payments platform had earlier launched the beta version of Saving Bank Accounts in August this year. The launch today was a follow through on the company’s promise at the August launch. The attendees of the event received the formal invite from Paytm only a night before and the intense excitement to shape up the whole affair within hours was evident as the hall buzzed with energy.
Jaitley lauded the Paytm team on achieving the vision of setting up a mobile-first bank within a span of five years.
“It’s a great tribute to entrepreneurship in India. Within a short span of about five years, a payment gateway opens, expands its network, expands its width of activities and then gets into online banking. A new chapter in the financial services history is being built,” he added.
Embracing the impact of rapid digitisation on banking sector, he called to mind the fact that over three years ago, nearly half of the country had no access to the banking system. Today, with the robust expansion of the banking system, no one can complain that one doesn’t have access to the banking system, he said.
Paytm Payments Bank claims to be India’s first mobile-first bank with zero fee on online transactions and no minimum balance requirement, charging four to seven percent interest (four on savings account and up to seven percent on fixed deposits). With a mission of bringing half a billion Indians into the mainstream economy, the bank has been designed to help achieve financial inclusion in the country.
"India is at the cusp of a financial revolution. The demography and access to financial services will create a ton of jobs in the country and Paytm is very proud to be a part of this financial services revolution. With Paytm’s six million merchants, we believe that we are creating at least 2.5-3 million incremental jobs in this country," said Paytm founder and CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma, at the launch in Delhi.
With high-profile investors like SoftBank and Alibaba in its kitty, Paytm plans to draw up a massive investment of Rs 20,000 crore.
"In the last two years and the next three years, we would have invested Rs 18,000 crore to Rs 20,000 crore. I don’t want to talk about profitability right now because we are still in an investment phase," added Vijay.
What does Paytm Payments Bank have to offer?
Disrupting the financial sector
Today, Paytm has close to 28 crore registered users, 18 crore wallet users, has done 250 crore annual transactions and touched nearly six million merchants. Paytm is also planning to open nearly one lakh Paytm-ka-ATMs across the country.
The company has planned an investment of $500 million in KYC (Know Your Customer) operations. It is setting up KYC centres across India to complete KYC for customers and make them eligible for a Payments Bank account.
Renu Satti, Managing Director and CEO of Paytm Payments Bank, said, "Paytm Payments Bank is the country’s largest mobile-first, technology-led bank. By virtue of reaching every nook and corner of the country, we will be able to bring the large unserved and underserved population to the mainstream economy. We are committed to offering the most transparent, safe and trusted banking to masses."
Other dignitaries present at the event were P. Vijaya Bhaskar, former Executive Director of Reserve Bank of India, and Dilip Asbe, interim CEO of National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), among others.