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After Whatsapp & Facebook Messenger, PayPal to enter Indian digital payments space soon


Global digital payments giant PayPal is all set to enter the payments space in India from next week, as per an ET report.

PayPal, has established a local subsidiary to enter the Indian market. With this move, the US-based payments giant enters a long list of international players like Google (Tez), Facebook’s WhatsApp, TrueCaller, Amazon Pay, etc. looking to bet on the Indian digital payments space.

A source privy to the matter said, “PayPal has tied up with a dozen merchants to start off their operations in India, where during the online checkout process customers will be shown the PayPal payment option.”

PayPal currently only facilitates cross-border payments for small merchants, entrepreneurs, and freelancers selling goods and services abroad. The report states that post the launch of services users will now be able to download the PayPal app and make online payments starting next week. However, it will only introduce merchant payments, to begin with.

Once launched, PayPal will act like a payment aggregator and work with banks to offer digital payment services to its customers. It is expected to use the Unified Payments Interface infrastructure through banks to facilitate domestic payments, as the company has not applied for a prepaid payments instrument (PPI) license from Reserve Bank of India to operate a digital wallet, yet.

To facilitate robust growth, the company has been strengthening its leadership team in India. Last year, former technology head for Asia-Pacific, Anupam Pahuja, was appointed as the managing director for India. In July, LendingClub’s former vice president of finance, Gunjan Shukla, was appointed as the chief financial officer for its India business. Most recently in September PayPal appointed Siddharth Dhamija, previously chief growth officer at Razorpay, as its head of growth and large merchant acquisition in India.

PayPal’s India entry will surely be a blessing for Indian traveling abroad, as the same application can be used to facilitate payments internationally, given the vast gamut of services offered by PayPal globally.

Post demonetisation, the digital payments ecosystem witnessed a growing interest of foreign players, looking to cash-in on the growing opportunity in India. As per recent NPCI data, total UPI transactions in October 2017 doubled to 76.96 million from 30.8 million in September 2017. Google is one of the most prominent international players that joined the race in September with its digital wallet Tez. Other players include Flipkart’s PhonePe; WhatsApp, which is gearing to roll out wallet services soon; Paytm; Amazon Pay (scheduled to be launched soon, Mobikwik, among others.

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