Paytm lands into Japan; launches QR-based payment wallet with its billion-dollar investor SoftBank

By: | Updated: October 22, 2018 5:16 PM

Making its Japan foray, billionaire Vijay Shekhar Sharma-led Paytm has launched PayPay, a QR based smartphone payment service in collaboration with SoftBank Corp and Yahoo Japan.

Paytm, a market leader in payments in India, has over 300 million customers and 8 million merchants so far.

Making its foray into Japan, billionaire Vijay Shekhar Sharma-led Paytm has launched PayPay, a QR based smartphone payment service in collaboration with SoftBank Corp and Yahoo Japan. Notably, Paytm had raised $1.4 billion from SoftBank last year in exchange for a 20% stake.

Detailing what the new product is about, Paytm said that PayPay is a feature-rich smartphone-based settlement service that allows users to store money from a bank account in their PayPay wallet and make payments with it. “Incepted in October 2018, PayPay aims to promote the broader use of cashless payment in Japan and to provide highly convenient services to both consumers and affiliated stores,” Paytm said in a blog.

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Paytm’s launch comes at a time when cash remains the mainstream settlement  methodology, with 80% of the payments made through cash in Japan. According to an earlier statement by Softbank, the Japanese government was taking measures to raise the cashless payment ratio to 40% by 2025, with a long-term goal of 80%.

In a bid to woo customers, PayPay has also announced that it will be giving electronic money equivalent to 500 Yen to each customer downloading the app and authenticating it with a valid Japanese mobile number. “In addition, for sellers and establishments, PayPay will not be charging any fee for ‘user scan’ type settlement for three years till the end of September 2021!” Paytm said.

Paytm, a market leader in payments in India, has over 300 million customers and 8 million merchants so far. Earlier in August this year, Warren Buffett-led Berkshire Hathaway had invested about $350 million in the Indian startup. Speaking to ET Now, Vijay Shekhar Sharma said that he cannot reveal the deal amount but noted that it is higher than Softbank’s investment. He said that Softbank deal happened at a valuation of over $7 billion.

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