In every geography where Google Pay is present, our stance is consistently one of partnering with the existing financial services and banking systems to help scale and enable frictionless delivery of financial products and services and contribute to the goal of financial inclusion.
This vision has been consistent since our launch in India and several of our offerings are built on top of NPCI’s pioneering UPI payment network and infrastructure, which has grown over 190X in the last 4 years, to processing over INR 6 trillion in value today.
At its core, Google Pay is a simple and secure mobile app for sending and receiving money, providing the functionality of a seamless payment experience, which is critical for consumers and merchants. Over the years, we have invested in efforts to bring the convenience of UPI to both online and offline merchants.
Furthering that objective, in 2019, we had announced the launch of the Spot Platform on Google Pay, a surface for merchants of all types - offline or digital native, small or large, across use cases - to find payment-ready users.
With more and more users embracing Google Pay in India, our Spot platform works as an additional discovery channel for many businesses to build and offer innovative new experiences to users to drive adoption of their services. The use cases span across ticket purchase, food ordering, paying for essential services like utility bills, shopping and getting access to various financial products.
Today we have close to 400 merchant Spots on Google Pay, and in this journey, we have seen that financial product offerings perform especially well, with offerings from Spot experiences delivered by financial services players like CashE, Groww, 5paisa, Zest Money etc. seeing significant growth and engagement from users on Google Pay. This engagement underscores that payments platforms are a great surface to deliver financial services to users across the country.
That being said, many of these Spot experiences especially in the financial products / service categories - be it insurance, wealth management, credit or other financial services - are regulated industries and each merchant is required to be duly authorised to provide those services before we onboard them on to the platform. As Google Pay, our role is firmly circumscribed to providing these merchants a surface where Google Pay users can discover and gain from these offerings - be it credit products, insurance or any others.
There have been a few instances where these offerings have been reported as ‘Google Pay’s offerings’ which fuels misinterpretation. To be clear, we have always looked at our role firmly as a partner to the existing financial system that brings unique skill sets and offerings to drive further adoption of digital payments in the country.
The success of UPI and digital payments in India have opened many new opportunities for the financial services industry to partner deeply with fin-tech players in the country, and we are encouraged by the progressive and tech-positive approach of the regulators to drive greater financial inclusion. We are committed to play our role by using technology as a means to level social inequalities and contribute to this vision operating within the purview of India’s legal and regulatory frameworks.
Posted by Sajith Sivanandan, Business Head, Payments and NBU, Google APAC