In what may give a fillip to online investing in mutual fund schemes, Fidelity Fund Management Pvt. Ltd has made the exercise a wee bit simpler. The company has allowed investors to use their VISA debit cards to buy funds from its website.
As of now, 27 banks with VISA debit cards are on the company’s list. The new facility will be in addition to the existing Internet banking facility, which the company offers to customers of about 39 banks in India.
Fidelity is the first mutual fund company to allow transactions with a debit card. However, all fund houses do allow Internet banking for buying funds online. With the Securities and Exchange Board of India recently indicating that it may introduce incentives for mutual fund distributors, it may make sense for you, the customer, to invest online that does not need an agent interface. And the ease of using a debit card may encourage investors to do so and increase online buying penetration. “Though I don’t have official confirmation, online buying of funds is still in low single digits,” says Rajan Krishnan, chief executive officer, Baroda Pioneer Asset Management Co. Ltd.
Fidelity is of the view that the initiative will help increase its reach beyond metros to tier II and tier III cities, where banks have a larger presence than any distribution network. Said Ashu Suyash, country head and managing director, Fidelity, “It helps expand the reach of online investing to over 100 million Visa debit card holders, many of whom are in locations beyond the top 10 cities. The debit card and Internet banking facilities together give our customers the option to choose from around 45 banks.”
At present the company manages assets under management of over Rs9,100 crore (as on 31 May) and has at least one million customers.
How to invest through debit card
If you wish to invest in Fidelity’s scheme using your debit card, visit the company’s website and register your login. You will get a list of schemes to choose from. Before placing your order to buy units, you will need to provide details of your VISA debit card, including the card number, expiry date of the card, CVV number and the Verified by Visa (VBV) password. Except VBV, all other details are mentioned on the card. In case you do not know your VBV password, you can generate it in a few minutes by going through an authentication process set up by your bank.
Online investing is cheaper, helps save time and enables you to invest anytime, anywhere.