WhatsApp gets approval from NPCI, may provide UPI services to 100 million users

New Delhi: According to a news report, Meta-owned WhatsApp has been allowed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) to add 6 crore users to its payments service.

With this move by NPCI, WhatsApp will take the total number of its customers to 100 million which it can offer Unified Payment Interface (UPI-based) facility.

“With this approval, WhatsApp will be able to expand the service to its 100 million users,” NPCI said in a press statement.

In November 2020, NPCI allowed WhatsApp to go live on UPI in a multi-bank model in a graded manner, allowing 20 million users to begin with. However, this number was later revised and increased to 4 crore in 2021.

NPCI allowed WhatsApp to go live on UPI in a graded manner as it did not want the messaging service to run away from the UPI market.

According to news reports, WhatsApp India Director-Payments Manesh Mahatme said that his company will work with NPCI to expand its users after the limit was raised to 40 million users. There are more than 487 million users on WhatsApp’s platform in the country.

The messaging app has not been able to carve a niche for itself in the crowded Third Party App Providers (TPAP) space. It processed 25.4 lakh transactions amounting to Rs 239.78 crore in March, when UPI processed a record 540 crore transactions, which stood at Rs 9.6 lakh crore.

In India, WhatsApp competes with Google Pay, SoftBank- and Ant Group-backed Paytm and Walmart’s PhonePe. Online transactions, lending and e-wallet services are growing rapidly in India, led by the government to drive the country’s cash-savvy merchants and consumers to adopt digital payments.

PhonePe and Google Pay together control about 81 percent of the UPI market.