Monday, 17 April 2017

Banks surpass PM's a million more PoS target

Banks surpass PM's a million more PoS target

Banks are on an overdrive (अतिप्रवाह) when it comes to installing point-of-sale (PoS) machines, having surpassed (पार किया) the target of installing 10 lakh additional machines in the wake of demonetisation before the March-end deadline. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had in December asked the banks to install a million additional PoS terminals within four months.The banks achieved the target as they stepped on the gas to protect their turf against payment apps too, people privy to the figures said, although the Reserve Bank of India releases official data with a one-month lag.

State Bank of India, Axis Bank and HDFC Bank took the lead by installing more than 7 lakh PoS terminals. SBI installed nearly 3 lakh PoS terminals, while HDFC Bank installed 2.3 lakh and Axis Bank 1.9 lakh terminals. At the end of February , SBI's PoS network climbed to more than 5 lakh terminals and it plans to double its network in the next six-eight months.

“The government wants a quantum jump in PoS terminals, but the future course will depend on the traction we receive on the ground,“ said Mrityunjay Mahapatra, deputy managing director, SBI. “The first step obviously is the creation of infrastructure, but with the PoS technology changing every three-four years, we need to focus on monetisation as well.“

According to the RBI data, the number of PoS terminals in the country grew to more than 22.2 lakh at the end of February 2017 from 17.6 lakh at the end of December 2016. At the end of March 2016, India had 13.8 lakh PoS terminals.

Axis Bank, which installed nearly 1.9 lakh terminals, set up a total of 2.5 lakh terminals in 2016-17. Till February , its PoS network stood at more than 3.9 lakh terminals.

“The scale of PoS installation in the last few months has been significantly higher than what was planned previously ,“ Sangram Singh, senior vice president-cards and merchant acquiring at Axis Bank, told ET. “In fact, in March alone, the number of PoS installations was more than the installations done in the previous year.“

Singh said future PoS installations will depend on how fresh demand evolves across different merchant segments and different product options with the launch of Bharat QR, UPI and Aadhaar Pay .

“The focus will also be to get transactions happening on these terminals. Right now, we have done a lot of installations, but the growth of spends needs to continue for it to give some results,“ he said. “At Axis Bank, we have also been running programmes and promotions to activate and drive usage at small merchant partners, especially focusing on the ones who have started accepting digital payments for the first time.“

SBI Plans to Reach 5.2 L Acceptance Points This Yr

MUMBAI State Bank of India plans to reach 5.2 lakh acceptance touch points to further the Modi government's Digital India initiative, reports Our Bureau. The state-run lender said under this plan, it will collectively receive Rs 1 lakh crore of transactions.“With the Digital India initiative pursued collectively by the Government of India, banks and technology companies, India is transforming into a digitally empowered society & SBI is playing a pivotal role in the process of digitisation,“ said Arundhati Bhattacharya, chairman, SBI.

Under the NABARD scheme, the bank is also targeting a deployment of 25,000 terminals in 12,500 villages. “The technology around the payment system is changing very fast and India is at the forefront of this change,“ said Rajnish Kumar, MD, SBI. SBI already offers a wide bouquet of technology products and services to its customers which include SBI Quick ­ a self-service app, State Bank Buddy ­ a mobile wallet, SBI Pay, SBI Mingle ­ social media banking platform on Facebook and Twitter and State Bank Anywhere a mobile banking app on smartphones.

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