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Infibeam Avenues Gets RBI Nod For Payment Aggregator Licence
Published by Inc42 | 28th October, 2022
  • The licence will enable Infibeam to scale its flagship brand - CCAvenue
  • The approval will also allow Infibeam to further expand its reach in multiple business segments across both online and offline arenas
  • The startup claims to have processed transactions worth INR 2.8 Lakh Cr in FY22, catering to more than 6.4 Mn merchants on the platform
Digital Payments Solution Infibeam Avenues has received 'in-principle' approval authorisation from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to operate as a payment aggregator.

The move will enable its flagship brand, CCAvenue, to scale offerings and help onboard a greater number of micro-entrepreneurs onto its fold. The approval will also allow Infibeam to further expand its reach across multiple business segments for both online and offline digital transactions.

"It's a vital development as it energises our vision and mission to build India's biggest digital payment infrastructure company With regulators entrusting faith in us, we promise to ourselves to make all Indian kiranas and merchants Digital, Credible & Bankable(DCB)," said Infibeam Avenues Managing Director Vishal Mehta.

Infibeam joins a growing list of more than 185 fintech firms, including big names such as CRED, Razorpay and Google Pay, which have submitted proposals to acquire the payment aggregator licence.

Of these, players such as Razorpay, Mswipe, Pine Labs, Stripe and Cashfree Payments have already received an in-principle nod for the licence. Interestingly, giants including MobiKwik's Zaakpay, Swiggy, Zomato, and Google Pay could likely see their licences rejected, according to a report.

Founded in 2007 by Sachin Dalal, Vishal Mehta and Neeru Sharma, the Gandhinagar-based startup provides end-to-end ecommerce payment solutions to enterprises and retailers. It also provides marketplace software technology to large enterprises and institutions, including state-backed Government eMarketplace (GeM) and Jiomart.

The startup claims to have processed transactions worth INR 2.8 Lakh Cr in FY22, catering to more than 6.4 Mn merchants on the platform. The startup's core payment gateway business claims to offer more than 200 cross-border payment options enabling payment processing in 27 international currencies across the globe.

It largely competes with startups such as Billdesk, PayU and Razorpay in the payments gateway space.

Infibeam Avenues reported a consolidated profit after tax (PAT) of INR 23 Cr in Q1 FY23, up 69% YoY from INR 13.4 Cr during the same period last year. Its revenue from operations rose 93% on a yearly basis to INR 418.3 Cr in Q1 FY23, driven by growing momentum of the digital payments space.

Not just India, Infibeam Avenues also operates internationally in countries including United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Australia and the United States.

The Coveted Licence
Unveiled by the RBI in March 2020, the payment aggregator framework mandates all payments gateway operators to have a licence in order to acquire merchants and to deploy digital payments solutions.

As a result, many have lined up to acquire a licence but so far close to 100+ applications have been rejected by the RBI, citing stringent licence norms.

Interestingly, fintech majors such as Razorpay and Cashfree, which have been under the pens of authorities for connection to the illegal Chinese lending app case, have also been granted the payment aggregator licence. On the other hand, players such as Zaakpay have seen their applications being rejected for flouting certain rules including know your customer (KYC) norms.

RBI, in its recently released 'Payments Vision 2025', said that it targets increasing the number of digital payment transactions by more than 3X by 2025.