Where do payments banks currently stand?

Three in-principle holders of payments bank licences—Reliance Industries, Aditya Birla Nuvo and Vodafone m Pesa—have not announced any defined plans


Airtel became the first payment bank to start operations in November last year by launching pilot programme in Rajasthan. Photo: Pradeep Gaur/ Mint
Airtel became the first payment bank to start operations in November last year by launching pilot programme in Rajasthan. Photo: Pradeep Gaur/ Mint

Mumbai: After 11 applicants received in-principle approvals from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in August 2015 to open payments banks, three backed out citing business concerns.

Of the remaining eight, two entities have started operations while other two have talked about where they stand with respect to the preparation to open a payments bank. With less than two weeks left to receive final approval from the regulator, three in-principle approval holders—Reliance Industries, Aditya Birla Nuvo and Vodafone m Pesa—have not announced any defined plans.

If they fail to open a payments bank within the 18 month-period as stipulated by the RBI, they will have to surrender their in-principle approvals.

Airtel Payments Bank

It became the first payment bank to start operations in November by launching pilot programme in Rajasthan. The bank is offering 7.25% interest on savings account and is charging 0.65% on withdrawal amount above Rs4,000. The bank plans to invest Rs3,000 crore and intends to convert at least 100 million out of its 270 million Airtel customers with the bank. MasterCard will provide payment processing solutions to the bank.

India Post Payments Bank

It became the second entity to start operations in January by launching pilot in Raipur and Ranchi. The bank is offering 4.5-5.5% on savings account. It is providing door step banking services by charging a nominal fee of Rs15-35 per visit for amount below Rs10,000. The government has so far allocated Rs500 crore. The bank plans to open 650 branches by September 2017.

Paytm Payments Bank

Vijay Shekhar Sharma has received final licence from RBI in January to set up his payments bank. Paytm Payments Bank is likely to launch with a pilot in parts of Uttar Pradesh and has received investments of Rs 220 crore from Sharma and One97 Communications. The bank has set itself a target of 200 million accounts, across current and savings accounts, and mobile wallets, within 12 months of the launch.

Fino Pay Tech Ltd

The company is waiting to receive final nod from RBI. Fino Pay Tech plans to launch payment bank in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar with 400 branches in the initial phase. It has indicated that the payments bank will keep the interest rate on its savings bank deposits within the current market range of 4-5%.

National Securities Depository Ltd

The depository intends to start operations in two months and is finalizing on a team which will handle payment bank operations.

Aditya Birla Nuvo Ltd

No defined plans regarding operations released in the public domain.

Vodafone m-Pesa Ltd

It received equity infusion worth Rs 47,700 crore from its parent company. No defined plans regarding operations in the public domain.

Reliance Industries Ltd

It signed an agreement with State Bank of India (SBI). No defined plans regarding operations are released in public domain.

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