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SBI Payments, a subsidiary of India's largest lender State Bank of India, will launch YONO Merchant App to provide low-cost digital payments infrastructure to merchants , the bank said today.

SBI in release said," YONO Merchant App will expand digitization of merchant payments in the country."

"Aiming to enable millions of merchants through mobile-led technology to accept digital payments, SBI plan to deploy low-cost acceptance infrastructure across India over the next two years targeting 20 million potential merchants across India in retail and enterprise segment." This will help boost digital payments acceptance infrastructure in tier 3, 4 as well as north eastern cities.

YONO SBI Merchant will act as a soft PoS (point of sale) solution for which it has partnered with global payments technology major Visa to enable Tap to Phone feature.

"It gives me immense pleasure to announce the launch of YONO SBI Merchant app by our digital payments subsidiary SBI Payments. The Bank launched YONO Platform three years ago, YONO, has 35.8 million registered users. YONO Merchant is a brand extension of this platform aiming to improve user experience and bringing convenience to our merchants," Dinesh Kumar Khara, the Chairman of SBI, said.

Khara said in the next 2-3 years, SBI is aiming to digitize millions of merchants by upgrading their mobile phones into a PoS device accepting all form factors, accessing Value Added Services such as loyalty, GST invoicing, inventory management, among others and connecting into an interface to avail other banking products at a click of a button.

The partnerships aims to give the necessary boost to scale up acceptance infrastructure across the country, SBI said.

"We are aiming to grow our merchant touch points multi-fold crossing 5-10 million within 2-3 years. YONO SBI Merchant is a great enabler for retail and enterprise merchants offering a holistic product proposition to improve merchant engagement, user experience and convenience," Giri Kumar Nair, MD& CEO, SBI Payments said.

SBI said the launch of YONO Merchant is in line with RBI's recent announcement of creating a Payments Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF) to encourage acquirers to deploy Point of Sale (PoS) infrastructure (both physical and digital) in lesser penetrated areas of the country. Merchants will now be able to turn their NFC enabled Android smartphones into payment acceptance devices through a simple mobile app, it said.

"Our partnership with SBI is aimed at empowering more merchants with low-cost, innovative, simple and secure ways of accepting digital payments and forms an important part of our global commitment to digitally empower 50 million small businesses. We are confident that with SBI's presence around the length and breadth of the country, millions of consumers in smaller cities will be able to pay digitally and conveniently at their nearby stores," TR Ramachandran, Group Country Manager, India and South Asia, Visa said.

He said as the number of consumers and merchants coming online goes up, seamless and secure digital payment experiences are essential to ensure they continue using digital payments and Visa continues to simplify payments with products like tokenization. "With India's smartphone base expected to reach 820 million in the next two years, both SBI and Visa firmly believe there is a tremendous opportunity to augment them as payment acceptance devices," said the release. After the deployment of the service, merchants will also be able to access details of transactions, generate reports, upload transactions for processing etc through SBI's mobile application besides accepting payments on their mobile device.

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