Flipkart gets PhonePe; buys mobile payment app started by ex-employees

Flipkart

E-commerce giant Flipkart has bought PhonePe, an app for mobile payment that was founded by three of its ex-employees, for an undisclosed amount.

The start-up was developing India’s first Unified Payments Interface (UPI) based product that would enable users to make payments using unique identification number and mobile phone or their virtual address without sharing any bank details. The only required criteria of using the app is that a user should have a bank account.

PhonePe was planning to go live this April before its acquisition by Flipkart.

Binny Bansal, CEO of Flipkart, was quoted saying payments have been a big hurdle in mass-adoption of online shopping in India and that UPI has potential to transform entire payment ecosystem. Last September, Flipkart had also bought another payment start-up FX Mart.

As for Sameer Nigam, Rahul Chari and Burzin Enginee – founders of PhonePe – the trio will be back with their ex-parent company, but this time they will work for their baby PhonePe, which will function as an independent business unit of Flipkart.

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