Vodafone applies for payment bank permit

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Mumbai | February 04, 2015 12:54 AM

Telecom major Vodafone on Tuesday said it has applied with the central banker, Reserve Bank of India...

Telecom major Vodafone on Tuesday said it has applied with the central banker, Reserve Bank of India, for a payment bank licence. “Vodafone has filed an application with RBI for the payments bank licence,” it said in a statement. Vodafone, which is the country’s second largest telco in terms of market share, said it is exploring options for partnerships. “We are keen and remain highly committed to building a financially inclusive business model leveraging our telco strengths and experience in the mobile payments space, fully aligned with the government and RBI’s vision,” the Vodafone statement added. Vodafone is the fourth major telecom player to apply for a payment bank after market leaders Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular and Reliance Industries (RIL) which owns the telco RJio. Others applying for the permit include Future Group. The last date for the application for the licence was February 2. Vodafone did not state whether it has partnered with another corporate entity or independently applied for the payment banks permit. Vodafone, a British multinational telecommunications company headquartered in London with presence across several countries around the globe, has experience of running a payment bank in Africa. Kenyan telecom major, Safaricom, which is partly owned by Vodafone, has found quite a bit of success with its payment banking operations in the continent. fe Bureau

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