Paytm will soon be providing life insurance up to ₹5 lakh to retail partners such as shopkeepers, the company said in a blog post. “We believe our Life insurance offering will help secure the lives of families whose financial security is often severely threatened at the demise of their sole bread-earner,” the company said. Paytm did not mention who the insurance partner will be. The move is an added sop to help the payments company attract retailers who might otherwise find signing up too bothersome.
Uber had done something similar in December 2016. The cab aggregator had partnered with Coverfox, an online insurance portal, to provide car insurance for its drivers under the UberCLUB driver rewards program. Uber’s primary rival Ola also started offering a comprehensive in-trip insurance programme, for its driver-partners across the country in December 2017.
Paytm and insurance
Though Paytm is providing life insurance through a third party in this case — as it does for accident insurance for travel bookings — it also has regulatory approvals to carry out insurance-based activities on its own. In February, the company set up two units for insurance-related operations.
Competition: In the online insurance space, there are a host of platforms. Paytm will be competing with EasyPolicy, Bankbazaar and PolicyBazaar. In terms of payment wallets, MobiKwik also plans to venture into newer domains of personal and consumer finance with a focus on lending and insurance. While these companies are aggregators, Narayan Murthy’s Catamaran Ventures-backed digital insurance company Acko General Insurance is the first insurance company with an online-only policy, which also received the final license from IRDAI in September last year.
The company recently appointed R Gandhi, a former deputy governor at the Reserve Bank of India.