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Merchant payments and financial lending services provider BharatPe has acquired multi-brand loyalty platform PAYBACK India from American Express and ICICI Investments Strategic Fund, which hold 90% and 10% stake respectively.

The company, which did not disclose the financial details of the deal, said that this is the first-ever acquisition by BharatPe and will make PAYBACK India a wholly-owned subsidiary of BharatPe.

PAYBACK India will continue to function independently after the acquisition, BharatPe said in a statement.

The acquisition of PAYBACK India is in line with BharatPe’s strategy to build robust and engaged network of over 20 million small merchants by 2023, the company said.
With this deal, BharatPe will be able to enhance its value proposition for the merchant partners, it said.
BharatPe has traditionally been powering payments and providing credit and other financial services to offline merchants, while this deal will enable it to enter a consumer-facing business.

Additionally, it will enable BharatPe to build a lucrative set of offerings for end customers, that will enhance footfalls at merchants and accelerate the growth of their businesses.

BharatPe will now also provide digital credit to customers and launch ‘Buy Now Pay Later’ (BNPL) services on the PAYBACK platform. PAYBACK India’s customers can also redeem their loyalty points and BNPL services at offline stores through the BharatPe quick response (QR) code.

PAYBACK India’s management will continue to run the platform and report to BharatPe’s group president, Gautam Kaushik, who joined the company in February. Before joining BharatPe, Kaushik was the managing director of PAYBACK India. Kaushik, BharatPe’s second group president, Suhail Sameer, and general counsel Sumeet Singh, will join PAYBACK India’s board as a part of the transaction, the company said.

“With the acquisition of PAYBACK India, we will be able to add a whole new dimension to our merchant value proposition. In addition to the range of payment and credit products which BharatPe offers to help merchants scale their business, we will also be able to drive more consumers to their stores,” BharatPe Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ashneer Grover said.

BharatPe currently provides a single interface for all existing UPI apps and allows merchants to accept UPI payments for free, through the BharatPe QR. It also supports merchants to across credit and other value-added services.

 

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