NE lead in digital transactions in Jan to Mar period : PhonePe
NEW DELHI, Apr 30
India's North East region, which includes some of the country's remotest areas, took lead in digital transactions during the January-March period, fintech major PhonePe said as it released the "digital payment trends for Q1 2022".
"North East region has been a big driver of the growth in digital transactions in Q1 2022," the Walmart-owned payments platform said, adding that PhonePe is accepted as a payment option across the "toughest terrains of the region including far-flung towns such as Changlang district in Arunachal Pradesh".
The highest quarter-on-quarter growth in transactions has been recorded by Assam, as per the data projects released by the company. "Assam witnessed the fastest adoption with 2.5+ lakh merchants in 2022 compared to just 10,000 merchants in 2020, followed by Tripura, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Sikkim, and Mizoram," it said.
Along with the acquisition rate, the overall transactions have also seen a significant rise from around 14.8 lakh transactions in Q1 2018 to over 7.5 crore transactions in Q1 this year, it added.
PhonePe, citing a report by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, said UPI has now become the "most popular mode of payment" in the North East and "58 percent of the region's total 15 lakh merchants have been digitised".
The data released by PhonePe also noted that Andaman and Nicobar Islands registered the highest jump in merchant payment transactions with a "29 percent QoQ increase" in the January-March period.
A total of 16 States and Union Territories witnessed over 100 percent growth in merchants onboarded in 2021 as compared to 2020, it pointed out, further noting that "merchants in Uttar Pradesh lead the adoption numbers", followed by Maharashtra, Karnataka, West Bengal, and Rajasthan, comprising "49 percent of the merchants in the PhonePe network".
“As predicted in our Q4 report, we continued to see a surge in volumes in Q1 2022 across various use cases further cementing the fundamental shift in consumer behaviour towards contactless payments. We are also excited about PhonePe’s P2M transactions exceeding P2P transactions indicating that digital payments have truly penetrated the merchant ecosystem and gained ubiquitous acceptance across the country," Karthik Raghupathy, Head of Strategy and Investor Relations at PhonePe, said.
Digital transactions, which received an impetus during the COVID-19 period which was marked by lockdowns, have crossed the 5 billion-mark in terms of transaction volume. The UPI numbers released by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) in March 2022 showed the overall transaction volume was over 5.4 billion.
This growth momentum is expected to continue as the payments ecosystem targets the next 500 million users with a focus on getting new users from Tier 3, 4, and beyond to the digital payments fold, PhonePe said in a press release.