SBI Buddy has tied up with brands such as Louis Philippe, Van Heusen, Allen Solly and Peter England to enable mobile payments across its 1200+ stores in the country. ICICI Bank has 44 lakh registrations for its Pockets app at the end of the June quarter. Paytm is leading in terms of wallet users with 125 mn, followed by MobiKwik with 32 mn and FreeCharge with 30 mn.
This is to allow customers to make payments using the bank’s mobile wallet SBI Buddy. SBI is also extending its wallet services to more than 2,500 educational institutions, government entities, ministries and departments, and other govt-owned public services.
The bank’s board is meeting on June 29 to take a decision in this regard. The board would examine the status and decide on long-term fund-raising in single or multiple tranches of up to $1,500 Mn through a public offer or private placement of senior unsecured notes in US dollar or any other convertible currency during 2016-17.
This would make the state-owned lender a global-sized bank. SBI had last month mooted the proposal for merger of its five subsidiary banks with itself and acquisition of the newly set up Bharatiya Mahila Bank. SBI has five associate lenders-State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, State Bank of Travancore, State Bank of Patiala, State Bank of Mysore and State Bank of Hyderabad.
The fund shall consider an assistance of up to Rs 3 Cr to an Indian registered company for promoting their business innovations using IT in India for banking and related technology. It has been named as the ‘IT Innovation Start-up Fund’.
This is due to the rising online frauds. Many scammers load Rs 10,000, the limit for non-KYC wallets, into wallets and then immediately transfer the amount into another bank account. The wallet players need to meet a few conditions for the bank to open the feature again. One of them is that there needs to be a buffer when a wallet transfers money to a bank account.
It now has more than 3 lakh machines. SBI has acquired 302,119 merchants while HDFC Bank came in second with 283,274. Axis Bank came third with 263,951 while ICICI Bank came in fourth with 200,759 machines. This data does not include SBI’s associate banks. In December 2015, HDFC Bank’s POS terminal count stood at 280,262 while SBI’s POS terminals stood at 270,307.
The profits have come down to Rs 1,263.81 Cr for the fourth quarter of last fiscal ended March 31 as it more than doubled the provisions for bad loans. State Bank of India had reported a net profit of Rs 3,742.02 Cr in the corresponding, January-March quarter of the previous fiscal 2014-15.
BSNL had launched Speedpay card service linked mobile wallet in July 2015. It allows its customers to transfer money, pay for services as well as withdraw cash of up to Rs 1 lakh. SBI has on its part launched its mobile wallet service, Buddy in 13 languages in August 2015.
The agency also said the opposition to the merger by the employee unions also poses a considerable risk that potential synergies of the merger may not materialize. Six banks comprising five associate banks, namely State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, State Bank of Hyderabad, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Patiala and State Bank of Travancore, plus Bharatiya Mahila Bank Limited have proposed their merger with SBI.