PayTM, India’s biggest mobile payment company and a minority subsidiary of Alibaba Group, said it partnered with Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur to bring its cashless payment solution to the country’s premier engineering college.
Under the program, students will be able to make payments using the mobile app at hostel canteens, medical store, tea stalls, book stalls and even the local cycle repairing shop.
“This will help students and teachers make quick and easy payments without the worries of carrying loose change,” the company claimed.
PayTM is one of the biggest beneficiaries of the government’s push for cashless payments as a way of cracking down on tax evasion in the country. Though the ‘black money crackdown’ does not seem to have had its intended result of flushing out much of India’s illicit money, it did give a big fillip to the electronic payments sector.
PayTM, for example, was recently valued at over $4 billion, almost as high as Flipkart — India’s biggest online success story — in a transaction by Reliance Capital to sell part of its stake in the payments company.
With this move, IIT Kanpur joins other campuses like IIM Ahmedabad, IIT Madras and Sree Ram College of Commerce in ‘going cashless’ with PayTM, the company said.
The mobile wallet provider is shortly expected to add banking functionality to its application, having received a payments banking license earlier this year.
The rise of alternative payments apps such as those from PayTM and Airtel is viewed with some concern by the banking industry. Many banks have also launched their own payment apps, but did not invest as much in marketing them as some of the standalone payments companies.