As Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 8th of November announced that the high value currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 could no longer be legal tender, bank employees geared up for the task, government and private sector employees and much of the rest of India that had access to banks rushed to the ATMs, the CEOs of the e-wallet firms sat back and celebrated. This was windfall. This was manna from heaven. Morning after the ban saw full page advertisements of e- wallets such as Paytm and Freecharge, welcoming the government’s move and urging the people to go cashless. In addition to new features which were introduced, e-wallet firms also came up with several offers and soon enough, profit data came pouring in.
According to a Live Mint report, e-wallet companies started witnessing spectacular growth within just a few hours of the announcement on ban.
If the note ban was a small step for India’s economy, it was one giant leap forward for e-wallet firms. Where Paytm claimed that it saw a 250% spike in overall transactions, including 400% increase in offline payments transactions. PayU India registered an 80% jump in transactions next day after the ban. Another e-wallet Freecharge which was acquired by Snapdeal last year claimed that the average balance on its platform increased 12 times since the ban. Mobikwik claims to have seen a 7000% increase in bank transfers since the wallet allowed users to transfer money to any account at 0% fee. Bipin Preet Singh, CEO Mobikwik said that User traffic and merchant queries have gone up by 200% since the prime minister’s announcement on note ban. It also claims to have seen a 40% increase in its mobile app downloads.