National Chronicle
Business/Economy National Chronicle Special Startup

PayNearby: A novel concept that impacts every citizen of the country

Every individual in India is unbanked after late noon. Close to 78% of all transactions in the country are in cash, a percentage that is 3 times higher than the average developed nation. Bridging these gaps that currently exist in the financial services landscapes in India is PayNearby. A novel concept that impacts every citizen of the country, PayNearby is a robust digital fintech company that empowers retailers at the first mile to offer digital financial/non-financial services to locals, thereby boosting financial inclusionin India.It is registered under the Startup India initiative of the Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP), Government of India.

The FinTech, working on a B2B2C model, empowers local shops by‘sachetizing’ the financial transactional products and equipping them with cutting-edge technology to facilitate a bouquet of financial services including deposits, domestic remittances, bill payments, card payments, granular investment and insurance assurance among others. Through retailer empowerment, the company ensures that all individuals find financial services in their locality, and are motivated to forego cash usage. More importantly, the company enables the retailers to sell online through its feature BuyNearby, thus helping them to remain relevant in the new age.

Incepted in April 2016 by Anand Kumar Bajaj, Subhash Kumar, Yashwant Lodha & Rajesh Jha, PayNearby has achieved great success in a span of just 2 years. Headquartered in Mumbai with its DevOps teams present in Chennai and Noida, the company boasts of a vast pan-India presence. It already has numerous technological tie-ups with financial institutions including YES Bank, RBL Bank, ICICI Bank, State Bank of India, Axis Bank, CC Avenue, Bill Desk, NPCI, Fastag, NBFC and FMCG companies. Its successful partnership with these leading banks gives it access to a variety of Banking infrastructure to orchestrate them into an OTT of Bankingsolutoin. Thanks to its leading-edge technological and integrations, PayNearby is one of the only two fintech companies hosted by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). It is also the sole technology provider forusing Aadhaar Enabled Payment Services(AEPS) and IMPS to YES Bank.

One of the key services provided by PayNearby include Aadhaar Banking, wherein it enables every shop to become a banking correspondent and provide cash withdrawal services using AEPS. It also leverages the Bharat Bill Payment System, the centralized bill payment system of NPCI, to allow retailers to offer bill payment for over 100 billers across the country. Further, it enables both high-tech and low-tech stores to accept card payments without the need of POS systems, while also offering an IMPS switch to facilitate domestic remittances.

Furthermore, it enables retailers to carry out eKYC services for suppliers, partners and clients through its simple yet robust API. Finally, it offers a unique, mobile-based accounting solution for small retailers known as Khaata Management. Other services offered by PayNearby include hyperlocal grocery shopping, prepaid cards, mutual funds/gold investments, insurance and lending/retailer credit.
PayNearby utilizes a host of new-age technologies including machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance its value proposition. It utilizes AI Bots for customer service, transaction recommendation and purchase recommendation while using machine learning to facilitate refund management, complaints and escalations management and banks downtime detection. It also offers digital identity and relevance to customers by leveraging PAN, Aadhaar, CIBIL, eKYC, Account Validation, GIS & Social Media.
On the back of its all-encompassing services, PayNearbyhasbeenidentifiedbytheInstituteofFinancialManagement&Research (IFMR) andtheUnitedStatesAgencyforInternationalDevelopment (USAID) toworkinthe ‘CashlessCatalyst’ programinJaipur, Rajasthan. TheinitiativegivesIndia’ssmallbusinessesandlow-incomeconsumersaccess todigitalpaymentsand broaderfinancialservices that translate into multiple earning avenues.
Through its multidimensional, tech-enabled services, PayNearby has already mobilized 235,402 stores, enabling proximate financial solutions for 21,923,809 customers. It facilitates IMPS transactions worth INR 1,200 crore and AEPS transactions worth Rs 2,050 crore each month. PayNearby’s Integrated Remittance and Aadhaar Payments platform is powered by YES Bank and is being used by the bank and its banking correspondents, contributing close to 2.5 crore transactions each month for the bank.
Driving home its key message ‘Har Dukan Digital Pradhan’, PayNearby services 16,000 PIN codes, 3 Lakh Retailers, 29 States and 7 union territories. The company is well on its way of achieving its goal of becoming the world’s largest hyperlocal fintech network by 2021, by which time it aims to be present in 20 countries with 2 million retailers and 40 million customers on board, with a gross transactional value (GTV) of INR 5 trillion.

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