Paytm testing models to make e-wallet usable offline

NEW DELHI: Alibaba backed Paytm is testing payment models to make its online wallet usable in the offline world-across large retail stores, restaurants and fuel stations-as the company looks for more avenues for the money stored in its digital wallet to be spent. Last week, Paytm, which recently got a payment bank licence from the Reserve Bank of India, started a pilot with Pizza Hut.

Under the model, a customer can pay directly from his/her Paytm Wallet by opening the Paytm application and selecting the merchant from the list. “The idea is very simple. We are creating more offline to online use cases for the wallet,” said Nitin Mishra, vice- president of Paytm. Mishra added that the company wants the Paytm app to become the local app for all payment needs be it
for bills, groceries, challans, shopping, dinning etc.

He added that the company is in talks with dozens of large format retail stores, food chains and large oil companies, which run petrol pumps, for deploying the solution. Apart from the Pizza Hut pilot, the company is also testing a more sophisticated payment model at home -the company’s own cafeteria.

Mishra said that since being inaugurated a week back, almost 40% of the daily transactions are happening through this mode. After placing the order, the employee has to just scan the QR code of the cafeteria through the Paytm application, enter the amount and the money is deducted from the wallet.

Mishra calls these “queue buster solutions” and said that they can be deployed in a variety of places to increase customer convenience and reduce use of cash. “We can use it for payments in mom and pop stores, public transportation such as auto rickshaws, large format stores etc. The solution can also be used by a customer to scan each unit in a large format store, create a cart and pay for it, without having to wait in a long queue,” he said.

The company is first testing the basic technology behind it and will only launch it at a mass scale after it is fine tuned. Though the tie-up with Pizza Hut is on a national level, the pilot is only been carried out in the outlet’s Gurgaon store.

Some of these models are very close to solutions that Alibaba has developed for Alipay in China which does close to 100 million

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