A customer uses an Mswipe terminal, operated by M-Swipe Technologies Pvt Ltd., at a clothing store (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Truecaller Buys Sequoia-Backed Payments Startup Chillr 

Caller ID app Truecaller acquired payments startup Chillr for an undisclosed amount as it plans to strengthen its financial services business by offering loans, insurance and mutual funds to its 150 million users in India.

Chillr Co-Founder Sony Joy will join Truecaller as vice-president of Truecaller Pay, the firm’s digital payments service. The entire 45-member team of Chillr, backed by Sequoia Capital, will be absorbed by the company, Joy told BloombergQuint over the phone.

The Swedish company, which launched Unified Payments Interface-based Truecaller Pay last year in partnership with ICICI Bank, now wants to roll out credit and other financial services to Indian users in the coming months, according to Joy. It also aims to double down on hiring as well.

Also read: WhatsApp Is Said to Hasten Payments Push in Biggest Market

India’s digital payments market is expected to grow fivefold to hit $1 trillion by 2023, according to Credit Suisse. It’s dominated by apps like Google Tez and Paytm that are plugged into the UPI—an inter-operable system that allows real-time transactions. WhatsApp, which has about 200 million users in India, too has launched its payments services.

“By acquiring Chillr, we are strengthening our plans to increase mobile payments adoption amongst our user base,” Nami Zarringhalam, co-founder and chief strategy officer of Truecaller, said in a media statement. The Chillr app will be completely phased out in the coming months and all its features will be integrated into Truecaller.

The new version of Truecaller Pay now has dedicated tabs for banking and payments respectively. The banking tab will have features like send and request money, scan and pay, while payments tab will have utility bill payments, among others.