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Rediff.com  » Business » Now pay for groceries, etc via Airtel mobile

Now pay for groceries, etc via Airtel mobile

Last updated on: January 31, 2011 18:12 IST

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Telecom major Bharti Airtel on Monday launched its 'Airtel Money' service, which will allow its subscribers to pay for groceries, bills and other dues through their mobile phones.

Last year, Bharti Airtel was granted the licence to use the "semi-closed wallet" by the Reserve Bank of India, which allows a customer to exchange physical cash for virtual money which can be stored on mobile phone to pay for goods/services for transaction of value less than Rs 5,000."

"We are proud to launch Airtel Money as a first-of-its-kind service from a telecom operator, that transforms the mobile phone into a secure and convenient wallet which customers can use to load money and use for shopping and making payments," Bharti Airtel president (mobile services) Atul Bindal said in a statement.

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Photographs: Reuters
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There is a huge potential for mCommerce services in India and the launch of Airtel Money will facilitate a paradigm shift in the way consumers transact, he added.

Currently, the service has been launched in Gurgaon, Haryana but will soon be extended to other key cities in a phased manner, the company said.

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In Gurgaon, Airtel has established partnerships with several merchants (including coffee shops, restaurants etc) to accept payments via Airtel Money, which will gradually be scaled up to over 3,000 merchants across the city.

The company had recently announced a joint venture with State Bank of India to provide banking and financial services to unbanked Indians using the mobile platform.


Photographs: Reuters
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