BharatPe Acquires Loyalty Platform Payback India
An employee operates a electronic payment terminal at a musical instruments store in Bengaluru, India. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

BharatPe Acquires Loyalty Platform Payback India

BharatPe bought multi-brand loyalty platform Payback India in the first acquisition by the digital payments firm.

The company acquired Payback India from American Express and ICICI Investments Strategic Fund, which hold 90% and 10% stake, respectively, the company said in a statement on Thursday.

Bharat Pe didn't disclose financial details. But a person privy to the development told BloombergQuint on the condition of anonymity that the deal size is expected to be around $30 million.

BharatPe started in 2018 as a merchant-focused QR-code based payments platform, and then ventured into lending to merchants. The period since its inception has seen cashless transactions grow exponentially in India. It competes with Alibaba-backed Paytm, Walmart-owned PhonePe, and Google Pay, among others.

Payback India will continue to operate independently and all its employees will become part of the BharatPe group, the statement said. Suhail Sameer and Gautam Kaushik, group presidents at BharatPe, along with General Counsel Sumeet Singh, have joined the board of Payback India.

Launched in 2010, Payback India says it has 100 million users who earn and redeem points on payments made to partner merchants. Post the deal, Payback's loyalty programme will be expanded to BharatPe's six million offline merchants as well.

“With the acquisition of Payback India, we will be able to add a whole new dimension to our merchant value proposition," Ashneer Grover, co-founder of BharatPe, said in the statement. "In addition to the range of payment and credit products which BharatPe offers to help merchants scale their business, we will also be able to drive more consumers to their stores."

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