Airtel Payments Bank, India’s first payments bank, today commenced national operations with services now LIVE in all 29 States of India. Shri Arun Jaitley, Hon’ble Union Minster of Finance and Corporate Affairs formally launched Airtel Payments Bank’s national operations today, marking a major milestone in the history of India’s financial services sector. Also present on the occasion were Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman, Bharti Enterprises; Uday Kotak, Executive Vice Chairman & MD, Kotak Mahindra Bank; Gopal Vittal, MD & CEO (India & South Asia), Bharti Airtel; and Shashi Arora, MD & CEO, Airtel Payments Bank.
Speaking on the occasion, Sunil Bharti Mittal said, “Bharti has always undertaken transformational initiatives that have the potential to make a positive impact on the society and contribute to the development of India. Airtel has been at the forefront of India’s digital transformation and has empowered over 260 million customers with affordable telecom services. With Airtel Payments Bank, we are starting another important chapter in our journey, with the potential to truly transform lives and contribute to financial inclusion in the country. Just like mobile telephony leapfrogged traditional telecom networks to take affordable telecom services deep into the country, Airtel Payments Bank aims to take digital banking services to the unbanked over their mobile phones in a quick and efficient manner. Millions of Indians in rural areas will get their first formal banking experience with Airtel Payments Bank.”
“We are fully committed to the Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s call to build a Digital India and lay a strong foundation for India’s transition to a cashless economy. Airtel Payments Bank will invest towards building a vast digital payments ecosystem with millions of merchants, and allow customers to make convenient cashless payments for good and services with their mobile phones.”
Airtel Payments Bank, a fully digital and paperless bank, aims to take basic banking services to the doorstep of every Indian by leveraging Airtel’s vast retail network. Starting today, over 250,000 neighbourhood Airtel retail stores across the country will also function as banking points, and customers will be able to open savings accounts, deposit and withdraw cash across any of these banking points.
No transaction charges for digital payments
Airtel Payments Bank will not charge any processing fee from its customers and merchants partners for digital transactions, thereby encouraging them to adopt cashless payments.
Airtel Payments Bank App and online Debit Card
Airtel Payments Bank also rolled out its app for Android and iOS. The app can be accessed through MyAirtel app. Customers simply need to install MyAirtel app on their smartphone for a seamless access to Airtel Payments Bank services. In addition, customers would also get access to a MasterCard powered online card, which can be used to make payments across all online merchants accepting MasterCard.
Nationwide Digital Payments Ecosystem
Airtel Payments Bank will develop a nationwide merchant ecosystem of over five million partners including small kirana stores, grocers, pharmacies, restaurants, etc. These merchant partners will accept digital payments from Airtel Payments Bank customers over mobile phones. Airtel Payments Bank has launched a Merchant App for digital onboarding of partners. Anyone looking to become a merchant partner can download this app from Google Playstore for free and start accepting digital payments instantaneously.
Educating customers on digital payments; rewarding them for making it a habit
Airtel will leverage its vast base of over 260 million customers and educate them on the benefits of digital payments, with special emphasis on customers with basic/feature mobile phones to make them use their phones to make USSD based payments.
Other important features of Airtel Payments Bank
- Digital Banking: Quick and paperless account opening using Aadhaar based e-KYC. This requires no documents at all, only the customer’s Aadhaar number is needed.
- The customer’s mobile number will be his/her bank account number.
- Interest rate of 7.25 % p.a. on deposits in savings accounts.
- One minute of Airtel mobile talktime for every Rupee deposited at the time of opening a savings account.
- Money transfer to any bank account in India (Free money transfer from Airtel-to-Airtel numbers within Airtel Payments Bank).
- Free Personal Accidental Insurance of Rs. 1 Lac with every Savings Account.
- Easy deposit and withdrawal facility across a wide network of Airtel retail outlets.
- USSD and IVR in 12 languages for non-smartphone customers.