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Aditya Birla Group gets RBI licence to start payments bank

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Aditya Birla Idea Payments Bank Ltd. has become the seventh entity to receive a final licence from Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for carrying out the business of payments bank in India.

  • Aditya Birla Idea Payments Bank Ltd. is a 51:49 joint venture (JV) between Aditya Birla Nuvo Ltd. (ABNL) and telecom operator Idea Cellular. Rajat Mukarji, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer of Idea Cellular had earlier mentioned that Aditya Birla Idea Payments Bank Ltd. will be launched in the first half of year 2017.

About Aditya Birla Group, Aditya Birla Nuvo Ltd. & Idea Cellular:

Aditya Birla Group is $41 billion multinational conglomerate having presence in 36 countries and staff strength of 120000 people.

  • Its headquarters is in Mumbai. The group has business interests in various sectors viz. metals, chemical, textiles, telecom, cement, wind power and ecommerce. Kumar Mangalam Birla is the current Chairman of Aditya Birla Group.Aditya Birla Group gets RBI licence to start payments bank
  • Aditya Birla Nuvo Ltd. is a premium textile company and is a part of Aditya Birla Group.
  • Idea Cellular is an Aditya Birla Group Company. It is a multinational corporation having a pan-India presence. It is an integrated GSM operator offering 2G, 3G and 4G mobile services.

Payments Bank:

In Indian context, Payments Bank is a new category of bank which can undertake restricted banking activities.

  • Concept of Payments Bank was recommended by Committee on Comprehensive Financial Services for Small Businesses and Low Income Households, set up by Reserve Bank of India (RBI). This committee was headed by Nachiket Mor.
  • RBI’s objective behind setting up Payments Bank was to promote financial inclusion.
  • Payments Bank is currently permitted to accept demand deposits up to Rs. 100000/- per customer.

Payments Bank in India – Current Scenario:

On 19th August 2015, Reserve Bank of India gave “in-principle” licences to eleven entities to launch Payments bank.

  • Out of them, Cholamandalam Investment and Finance Company, Tech Mahindra, and a consortium of Dilip Shanghvi – IDFC Bank – Telenor Financial Services have dropped out. These entities believe that restrictive norms in conducting business, competition from banks and other players in digital space do not offer a proper scope to make money from Payments Bank business.
  • Except Vodafone M-Pesa Ltd, other 7 entities have received the final licence from RBI.
  • So far two entities have already commenced operations. Airtel Payments Bank was the first one to start and was soon followed by India Post Payments Bank (IPPB).