Mobile Commerce

India’s MoneyOnMobile Sees 27 Percent Processing Jump

MoneyOnMobile is continuing to ignite India’s mobile money scene — topping 131 million users in March, the company announced yesterday (April 14).

MoneyOnMobile, which is the Indian subsidiary of U.S.-based Calpian, also hit a transaction processing volume of $29.3 million (1.762 billion rupees), which is a 27.1 percent increase from February’s figures. Since launching in 2010, MoneyOnMobile has been accessed by 131 million users, and in March alone the company grew by 3.5 million unique users.

Since its inception, the company has seen continual growth across the region as it aims to provide a cheap and efficient way for India’s cash-centric population to pay their bills using a mobile device. The company also added domestic remittances at the end of 2014, and in March, MoneyOnMobile saw roughly $5.8 million in volume with over 98,000 transactions, according to Shashank Joshi, President of MoneyOnMobile.

“Domestic remittances have grown over 100 percent per month on average since launch. This remarkable growth is part of the increase in overall volume this month,” he said.

MoneyOnMobile is a mobile payments service provider that allows Indian consumers to use their mobile phones to pay for goods and services, or transfer funds from one cellphone to another using simple SMS text functionality. The service is now offered to Indian consumers through 252,815 retail locations throughout India, which is a monthly increase of 5,344 stores from February’s figures.

Joshi recently chatted with MPD CEO Karen Webster about how his company has shifted the mobile money paradigm in India – and redefined what it means to deliver “money on mobile.” Joshi explained that most consumers in the region don’t have a trust for many mobile money options since there isn’t the human connection that the cash-driven population relies on and trusts in. But MoneyOnMobile’s retailer-assisted model enables face-to-face interaction between the consumer and merchant, while transactions themselves are done via a mobile phone.

What the company has managed to achieve is the ability to deliver a mobile payment solution to India’s urban and rural populations — a region in which 600 million people are unbanked, according to MoneyOnMobile. Allowing consumers to pay in cash, and being able to later execute that transaction using a mobile phone has eliminated the friction associated with how bills are paid, creating a base of consumers who can be enabled for other mobile transactions as well. And, its gotten the stamp of approval from the Reserve Bank of India.

With the regulator’s approval behind it, MobileOnMoney’s growth shows it may be poised for mobile money success in an area where other companies have tried, and failed to ignite the mobile money scene.

"The overall success of our business model is playing out across India,” said Calpian CEO Harold Montgomery. “This month, our prepaid mobile phone time sales, known as mobile top-up, increased 22 percent — and the average transaction size increased…67 percent."

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