Willing to work with ‘important player’ Paytm: Axis Bank CEO Amitabh Chaudhry

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Calling Paytm an ‘important player,’ Axis Bank MD and CEO, Amitabh Chaudhry, on Monday stressed that the private sector lender is willing to work with the Noida-based fintech major.

Amitabh Chaudhry, chief executive officer of Axis Bank Ltd., during a Bloomberg Television interview ahead of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos Switzerland, on Monday, Jan. 15, 2024. The annual Davos gathering of political leaders, top executives and celebrities runs from January 15 to 19. Photographer: Hollie Adams/Bloomberg

Chaudhry made the remark at the launch of Axis Bank’s ‘2023 Burgundy Private Hurun India 500,’ as per Moneycontrol. Speaking at the same event, however, Arjun Chowdhry, Group Executive, Axis Bank, said that though discussions are on with Paytm, these are for ‘general business and not specific to any business.’

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“Subject to regulatory approval, and if the regulator (RBI) allows us to work with Paytm, of course we will work with them. They are an important player,” Chaudhry said.

Chowdhry, meanwhile, highlighted: ‘Discussions with Paytm are for our normal business services. Post the development that happened on January 31, we are discussing new things.”

He was referring to the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) crackdown on Paytm Payments Bank Limited (PPBL), Paytm’s banking arm, due to PPBL’s ‘persistent non-compliances.’ The measures include a ban on accepting fresh deposits and doing credit transactions after February 29.

Paytm set to operate as a third-party app: Report

A recent report stated that to ensure that the fintech giant’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) remains available for use, One97 Communications Limited, Paytm’s parent firm, is focusing on the third-party payment app (TPAP) route.

To this end, the report added, Paytm aims to use three or more banks, including Axis Bank, for new virtual payment addresses (VPA) for users of its UPI services.

Lenders such as Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, and ICICI Bank support multiple fintechs through the third-party route, it noted.

A typical VPA a mix of the brand name of both the fintech and the latter’s partnering lender. In Paytm’s case, the address ends with @paytm.

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