Mobile point-of-sales (PoS) firm Mswipe has raised around Rs 220 crore in a new round of funding, according to filings with the Indian ministry of corporate affairs (MCA). The funding came from existing investors including US-based hedge fund Falcon Edge, technology investment firm Epiq Capital, DSG Consumer Partners and Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin-promoted B Capital Asia.
As per the filing, B Capital Asia and Epiq Capital have put in around Rs 70 crore each, Falcon Edge has invested nearly Rs 57 crore and DSG Consumer Partners Rs 21 crore.
Mswipe deploys PoS terminals at merchant outlets and processes card transactions for Visa, Mastercard, RuPay, and others. Unlike traditional PoS-deploying entities, Mswipe onboards its own merchants and deploys mobile PoS terminals. In 2017, Ratan Tata-promoted UC-RNT had invested Rs 200 crore in the company, along with participation from existing investors.
The USD 3 billion PoS market has multiple players such as Ezetap, PineLabs and e-Paisa. According to media reports, Reliance Jio is also running a pilot program with merchants in Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai and Pune.
In 2017, in a bid to encourage small shops and merchants to accept card payments, the Indian government decided to bear the charges merchants pay to banks on purchases of up to Rs 2000 made through either a debit card, BHIM app or Aadhar number. The move has helped elevate the adoption of card payments across the country.
According to data released by India’s apex bank, Reserve Bank of India, there were 3.6 million card payment terminals as of January. Collectively, these PoS processed more than 4.7 billion card swipes during 2017-18. Earlier, a report by Economic Times said the government had set a target of deploying two million PoS terminals in 2018-19.
Last year, Singapore government-owned fund Temasek Holdings and one of the largest payments company Paypal had invested USD 125 million in Pine Labs that claims to have 100,000 merchant partners across India and Malaysia.
In January this year, MasterCard in partnership with payment solution company Mosambee launched the android-based POS machine ‘SamosaPOS’. The machines double up as a calculator too.
Rajeev Kumar, senior vice-president of South Asia’s market development at Mastercard, had said in a press release, “Through this partnership with Mosambee, Mastercard’s aim is to reach out to small, micro merchants, kirana stores and create a behavioural shift towards accepting digital payments.”
Flipkart’s fintech arm PhonePe too had launched its own POS machine in 2017 and later upgraded the machines to be Bluetooth enabled. However, its plans quickly ran into trouble due to faulty machines and manufacturing hiccups.
Yuvraj Singh Shekhawat, head-offline organized business at PhonePe, had said, “We had to reorient our strategy in terms of the manufacturing plans, but currently, we are not close to the numbers we had anticipated. From the perspective of extending the pilot to multiple other cities and use cases, we are not equipped.”