Airtel Payments Bank (APBL), India’s first Payments Bank, has partnered with Mastercard, leading technology company in the global payments industry, to develop customized products catering to customers across the underbanked spectrum including farmers, small and medium enterprises and retail customers.
As part of the Government’s vision of Digital India and Banking for every Indian, both entities have been working towards driving adoption of formal banking and digital payments in the country.
The collaboration will bring together Mastercard’s global and local experience in developing advanced financial solutions and Airtel Payments Bank’s strong distribution network to reach the last mile and its large customer base.
The collaboration aims at building a digital platform which provides farmers with knowledge about advanced farming techniques and connection to marketplaces, while simultaneously enabling them to receive payments directly in their Airtel Payments Bank account.
Combined with 500,000 banking points of Airtel Payments Bank, the platform will provide farmers with access to neighborhood banking, earnings stability and income growth. This will be a significant move towards building a cashless economy.
Both partners will also work together to create customized solutions for millions of small businesses across the country. These solutions will empower small and medium scale enterprises, who have limited access to finance, to make assisted payments, manage their financial & transactional processes, and also avail working capital in these times of crisis.
Finally, Airtel Payments Bank and Mastercard will work together to create differentiated card solutions, including solutions for contact less payments via NFC (Near Field Communication) for customers and merchants.
Anubrata Biswas, MD and CEO, Airtel Payments Bank said “We are glad to partner with Mastercard to develop innovative solutions as part of our endeavor to drive financial and digital inclusion in the country. Together, we aim to create products that will motivate customers to adapt formal banking behaviour and start opting for digital payments. These solutions will be an addition to our existing differentiated bouquet of easy, accessible and convenient banking and payment solutions to serve the underserved and unbanked population.”
Porush Singh, Division President, South Asia, Mastercard said, “Digital payments have the potential to bring a positive change to the lives of millions of Indians. Mastercard is delighted to extend the partnership with Airtel Payments Banks to build innovative digital payments solutions that will help farmers and small & medium businesses connect with the digital world. These solutions will enable them to access a larger market base, receive payments easily into their bank accounts, safeguard their money against risks associated with cash and get easy access to credit. The partnership will also play an important role towards achieving Mastercard’s goal to empower India’s merchants with digital payments acceptance infrastructure by the end of this year.”
Airtel Payments Bank has been working with Mastercard for last 3 years to offer Mastercard powered debit cards to its savings bank account customers in the country.