Airtel Payments Bank has appointed Dhiraj Sharda as its chief digital officer where he will be responsible for accelerating digital payments, product development, digital delivery and developing marketing platforms. Sharda will be reporting directly to Shashi Arora, MD and CEO of Airtel Payments Bank.
Sharda joins Airtel Payments Bank from IAC, the parent company of Expedia, Match and Tinder.com, where he was senior director of product. In the past, he has worked with Prosper, Visa, AT&T, Yahoo and Wipro. He has a MS degree from Stanford University and a degree in computer engineering from Pune University.
Airtel is trying to develop a paperless bank where customers can access services over their mobile phones, including all feature mobile phones. It is developing a nationwide digital payments ecosystem of over 3 million merchant that will include small kirana stores, shops and restaurants etc.
Currently, Airtel Payments Bank offers 7.25 % per annum on deposits in savings accounts and a customer’s Airtel mobile number will be their bank account number. It also offers personal accidental insurance of Rs 1 lakh with every savings account.
The company expanding its payments bank operations to Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka in a couple of weeks following the launch of its pilot in Rajasthan in November.
In October, former PayU executive Abhishek Tripathi joined Airtel Payments Bank to lead its small and medium business division.
In July, Saranjeet Singh joined Airtel Payments Bank from PayU. At Airtel Payments Bank, he will be responsible for digital marketing for the launch of he service.
The bank also appointed Shashi Arora as CEO and MD of the company in June. Arora replaced Manish Khera who headed Airtel’s payments bank for a short duration of 2 months. Arora was the CEO of Airtel Digital DTH TV for almost 5 years, before which he was the CEO of upper North region at Airtel for over a year.