Airtel to Launch Payments Bank in Q2 FY17

Airtel to Launch Payments Bank in Q2 FY17
  • Airtel Payments Bank was formerly known as Airtel M Commerce Services.
  • It received a payments bank licence from the RBI on April 11.
  • Kotak Mahindra has acquired a stake in Airtel Payments Bank.

Bharti Airtel's mobile commerce subsidiary, Airtel M Commerce Services, has been renamed Airtel Payments Bank. The company plans to launch its payments bank operations in the second quarter of the current fiscal year, it said in a statement on Tuesday.

The new logo reflects its commitment to contribute to the India's agenda of financial inclusion by taking banking services to the last mile, the company said.

Airtel Payments Bank received a payments bank licence from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on April 11, 2016, and plans to start rolling out its banking network in the second quarter of the current financial year.

(Also read: What Are Payment Banks, What They Can and Cannot Do, and Who Will They Affect?)

"The new identity reflects our strong focus on the payments bank segment and our commitment to the Government's vision of financial inclusion and banking services for every citizen," said Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, Bharti Airtel.

According to the statement provided by the company, it plans to leverage Bharti Airtel's national distribution network that runs into rural areas and offers a platform to deliver banking services to the last mile. Its distribution channel is spread across 1.5 million outlets with network presence in 5,126 census and 464,361 non-census towns and villages in India covering approximately 87 percent of the country's population.

Kotak Mahindra Bank has acquired 19.90 percent stake in Airtel Payments Bank Limited approximately Rs. 98.8 crores, and is expected to bring its banking expertise to the venture.


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