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ICICI Bank now has 5 million VPAs from its mobile applications

ICICI Bank has 5 million virtual payment addresses (VPAs) which were generated on its mobile applications. However, the bank did not indicate the number of merchants that it acquired for the UPI this quarter. In the preceding quarter, the bank said that it acquired 130,000 merchants through its EazyPay application.

Note that the bank does not give information on the number of transactions which it processes or the value of the transactions. It is also unclear what VPAs are active at moment. However, the number of merchants it acquires is significant as banks are allowed to charge merchants a higher fee than compared to P2P payments on the UPI. The merchant discount rate (MDR) — the fee borne by the seller to provide services—is 0.25% for payments below Rs 1,000 and 0.65% for all other charges.

So far, ICICI Bank VPAs can be created through four applications – iMobile (only for bank customers), Pockets wallet (for non-bank customers as well), Mera iMobile (Indic language support), and Truecaller (through an integration this year).

Meanwhile, its rival Axis Bank said that has over 2.1 million VPAs across different apps on the Unified Payments Interface (UPI). So far, Axis Bank has partnered with a number of technology players to offer UPI including Google Tez, Uber, Ola and Samsung Pay. Axis Bank added that it has seen more than 11 million transactions on the UPI till date.

The  UPI, as a whole, saw an 85% growth in the total transaction volumes taking place between August and September 2017, according to data published by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). The total number of transactions in September were around 589% higher than they were at the end of January 2017. The amount transacted increased by 28% to Rs 5,293 crores over August 2017. The amount transacted in September 2017 was 212% higher than what it was in January 2017.

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The number of ICICI Bank debit card transactions at point-of-sale terminals increased year-on-year by 64% in Q2FY2018  while the number of credit card transactions increased year-on-year by 40%. The bank has a 43.2 million debit and credit cards. The average monthly transaction value on debit cards during the quarter stood at Rs 4320 crore, growing 63% from the same quarter last year. Meanwhile, the average monthly transaction value on credit cards during the quarter stood at Rs 3968 crore, growing 45% year-on-year.

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