Trupay to expand into mutual funds, insurance and travel

Trupay, which will use the Unified Payments Interface, has partnered with 21 banks, aiming to expand its usage for investments, travel and for cash-on-delivery

Capitalizing on the recent launch of the Unified Payments Interface (UPI), Trupay, a digital financial technology app, is looking to enter areas such as payments to mutual funds, insurance companies and taxi aggregators such as Uber and Ola.

Trupay has partnered with 21 banks, aiming to expand its usage for investments, travel and for cash-on-delivery.

Trupay will use UPI, which allows the user to make instant payments to anyone on its contact list directly from one’s bank account.

UPI securely transforms a user’s bank account into a pay-on-the-go solution, which can then be used to pay anyone with just their phone number.

UPI is an interoperable system launched by the Reserve Bank Of India (RBI) and the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), which will allow peer-to-peer and peer-to-entity payments by unifying mobile number, Aadhaar number and the bank account number.

“We had around 80,000 customers six months back; but within three days of UPI’s launch, we have added 20,000 customers, taking the total customer base to one lakh (100,000),” Vivek Lohcheb, co-founder of Trupay, said.

Customers can use Trupay and have a common app for all banks instead of having to use UPI in different banking apps. It will prove useful for those with multiple bank accounts.

As of now, the focus is on integrating all the mobile numbers under UPI because these are more relevant to banks.

However, going forward, Aadhaar should become the next round of integration, he said.

Explaining why UPI will be a success, Lohcheb added that mobile phones are more important to people in remote areas because even though they have bank accounts, they do not have access to bank branches or automated teller machines (ATMs) to withdraw money and transact.

“It is interesting to see 65% of our customers are from non-digitalized places, where phones are being used to send and receive money,” Lohcheb said.

Trupay is also planning to be more aggressive in the offline stores segment rather than the online space.

Sometimes, people don’t have cash in hand while making payments to grocery or retail shops, or while receiving delivery from merchants; then UPI can be used to make the payments on a real-time basis, Rahul Gochhwal, another co-founder of Trupay, said.

“Using the phone number of the customer, a notification can be sent by the merchant and with just one click, the amount can be debited from the customer’s account and credited to the merchant’s account”, Gochhwal said.

Currently, any transaction conducted on Trupay has a ceiling of Rs.1 lakh . However, Trupay is in talks with the NPCI for a relaxation of limits.

Investing in mutual funds, for instance, can require people to invest more than Rs.1 lakh in one transaction.

“Talks are on with NPCI to look at the various use cases where Trupay (with the use of UPI) can come in and also for setting up different transaction limits for different use cases,” Lohcheb said.

“UPI is an innovative concept; however, it still requires people to use their bank accounts… Our customer base is not likely to be affected. Those having only physical cash will continue to depend on wallets for their transactions, which also thrive on cashbacks and discounts.” Naveen Surya, managing director of digital payments company ItzCash, said.