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WhatsApp Is Planning To Enter Lending Market In India!


WhatsApp Payments has listed credit as its area of business in India in its recent Ministry of Corporate Affairs filing. This might be a new massive market for the brand trying to push the WhatsApp payments feature to more and more users. WhatsApp payments have seen a subpar adoption since it’s launch as a UPI Money Transfer option.

- Updated: 2nd May 2020, 06:46 IST

While WhatsApp is extremely successful in India and across the world, its payments feature has seen a much smaller chunk of adoption. The service launched initially, started offering UPI Transfer services to its users. Facebook has been struggling to roll out WhatsApp pay in India and now the Social Media giant has had to indulge in multiple discussions with the National Payments Corporation of India to ensure all regulatory issues are ironed out. Although WhatsApp pay is in a phased roll-out stage, Facebook is apparently working on entering the lending space in India as well.

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In a new regulatory filing, the company has mentioned credit as one of the business plans in India and this comes just a day after Amazon introduced the Amazon Pay Later service in India. WhatsApp payments have listed credit as one of the areas of interest in its recent Ministry of Corporate Affairs filing in India as accessed by TechCrunch. While the technicalities of the credit offering haven’t been known and it remains to be seen if WhatsApp is looking to offer microloans or credit against purchases through the payment’s platform.

Either way, the credit feature will only be launched after WhatsApp pay is rolled out commercially, the lending space is expected to see a surge due to the unexpected COVID 19 pandemic and WhatsApp is trying to tap into this segment at the right time to make the most of the situation. Seeing this as an upcoming opportunity, Amazon has also launched the Amazon Pay Later service to offer instant credit on purchases from their site. This includes loans on groceries and utility bills as well. This new service offers the option to repay in the next month at no additional fees or even convert a large amount transaction to monthly installments for up to 12 months.

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Flipkart has also had a Flipkart Pay Later option for its users offering credit services on their platform. After receiving the NPCI license in February this year, Facebook has begun the first phase of WhatsApp pay rollout. This rollout is having reportedly introduced the Payment service to as many as 10 million users in India. The WhatsApp payment service uses UPI to allow mobile transactions, and for the service to reach the 400 million users in India, all pending compliance pain points will have to be resolved efficiently.

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Highlights of the Story

  • WhatsApp payments were first launched a while ago and introduced UPI payments using the WhatsApp account in India.
  • WhatsApp has struggled with the adoption of its payment services in India since the launch
  • The company has now listed credit as an area of business that hints that WhatsApp payments might be entering Money Lending business in India.