Online directory services platform JustDial will be launching a new product in August called JD Omni to help small business manage their online and offline sales, JustDial founder and managing director VSS Mani told analysts in an earnings conference call.
The JD Omni will be a plug and play, cloud-based solution which can be accessed over cell phones via a dashboard, Mani explained in the analyst call. The product will allow small businesses to manage their inventory, billing, and third party logistics. The product will also allow businesses to integrate bar code and QR code systems.
“As enablers, we always think for our vendors and they would probably lose their market share to online players. Hence we thought a cloud-hosted solution which can help them manage their offline and online business through the Omni system. And that’s what we’re rolling out this August,” Mani told analysts in the call.
JD Cash delayed
VSS Mani also said that JustDial’s payments platform will be launched in the next quarter. “So once we launch the JD App by next month or September that’s when we will have the JD Cash go live. So hopefully the next quarter after that well have JD Cash go live,” Mani said.
In August last year, Justdial had first said that it was planning to introduce JD Cash, a payments platform integration for its Search Plus suite of services.
Earlier this year, Mani had said that they were looking to launch JD Cash sometime between April-June 2015, during the company’s Q3-FY15 earnings conference call. JD Cash was again delayed in the preceding quarter and Mani said that the beta version of JD Cash is ready and they’re currently testing it. Justdial wants to be “100% sure about the way we go about it”, because it involves financial transactions.
Note that Justdial has opted to tie-up with an existing mobile wallet service provider instead of applying for a prepaid-payment instruments (PPI) license itself. However, it hasn’t revealed the name of the wallet service provider it has tied-up with.
JustDial needs a wallet to operate JD cash or partner with one, because it is a marketplace. If it were an e-commerce player, and owned the inventory or the services that customers were buying on its site, it would effectively be operating a closed wallet, which would not need a license. Since customers are buying from merchants and service providers via JustDial, it needs a semi-closed prepaid payment instrument (or a semi-closed wallet).