Homepage of PhonePe as on 20 Feb 2017
|PhonePe Internet Private Limited|
|Parent||Flipkart (Owned by Walmart)|
PhonePe is an Indian e-commerce payment system and digital wallet company headquartered in Bangalore, India. It was founded in December 2015, by Sameer Nigam, Rahul Chari and Burzin Engineer. PhonePe app went live in August 2016 and was the first payment app built on Unified Payments Interface (UPI).
The PhonePe app is available in over 11 Indian languages. Using PhonePe, users can send and receive money, DTH[disambiguation needed], recharge mobile, data cards, make utility payments, buy gold and shop online and offline. In addition PhonePe also allows users to book Ola rides, pay for Redbus tickets, order food on Freshmenu, eaf,fit and avail Goibibo Flight and Hotel services through microapps on its platform.
PhonePe is accepted as a payment option across 5 million offline and online merchant outlets covering food, travel, groceries, movie tickets etc. The app crossed 100 million user mark in June 2018 and also crossed 2 billion transactions in April 2019.
FxMart received its licence to operate on 26 August 2014. PhonePe was incorporated in December 2015. In April 2016, the company was acquired by Flipkart. and as a part of the Flipkart acquisition, the FxMart license was transferred to PhonePe and it was rebranded as the PhonePe wallet. PhonePe’s founder Sameer Nigam was appointed as the CEO of the company.
Within 3 months of launch, the app was downloaded by over 10 million users. In 2018, PhonePe also became the fastest Indian payment app to get a 50 million badge on the Google play store. The PhonePe app overtook BHIM to emerge as the market leader in UPI transactions in August 2017.
Innovation and Partnerships
In October 2017, PhonePe launched a POS device built in India. The Bluetooth enabled POS device looks like a calculator and works with AA batteries. The hardware uses Bluetooth connectivity and enables payments through all the mobile devices that can access the PhonePe app.
In January 2018, PhonePe partnered with Freecharge. This partnership has empowered PhonePe users to link their existing FreeCharge Wallets to the PhonePe app. PhonePe has also entered into similar partnerships with Jio Money and Airtel Money.
Awards and recognition
- 2018: recognized by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) for driving the largest number of merchant transactions on the UPI network.
- 2018: Best Mobile Payment Product or Service Category at the IAMAI India Digital Awards 2018.
- 2018: Won the UPI Digital Innovation Award from NPCI in 2018.
- 2018: Won the SuperStarUp Asia Award in 2018.
- 2018: Awarded at the India Advertising Awards 2018 in the Telecom and Technology category.
- 2019: Won the ‘Best Mobile Payment Product or Service’ at the 9th India Digital Awards 2019 organised by IAMAI.
- 2019: 'Best Digital Wallet' Initiative at the Indian Retail and eRetail Awards 2019.
- 2019: Awarded the 'Best Digital Wallet' initiative at the 8th Annual Indian Retail & eRetail Awards 2019 organised by Zee Business and The Economic Times.
On 14 January 2017, ICICI bank blocked PhonePe transactions, citing the reasons that it did not meet the NPCI guidelines. Initially, on 19 January 2017, NPCI instructed ICICI to allow UPI transactions via PhonePe. During this period, Airtel too blocked PhonePe transactions on its platforms. A day later, on 20 January 2017, NPCI renounced the previous instructions citing the reason that PhonePe indeed violated the UPI norms.
After this, PhonePe closed its operations on Flipkart's website, to align itself with the terms stated in the updated verdict from NPCI. By February, 2017, PhonePe resolved the issues with ICICI.
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