Vodafone is to launch its m-pesa mobile money transfer service in India in partnership with the country's largest bank, Icici Bank.
Icici Bank and Vodafone India, through its 100% subsidiary, Mobile Commerce Solutions Ltd. (MCSL), say they have finalised plans to launch the service later this year in the eastern region of the country at Kolkata, West Bengal, Bihar and Jharkhand. Subscribers to the service will be offered a mobile money account with Iici Bank and a Mobile Wallet - issued by MCSL.
M-Pesa will feature money transfer to any mobile phone and bank account in India, alongside a range of mobile payment services including purchase of mobile recharge and utility bill payments.
The partners say they will extend M-Pesa to the furthest regions of the sub-continent via a network of authorised agents, who will enable subscribers to deposit and withdraw cash in and from their account.
Chanda Kochhar, managing director& CEO, Icici Bank says the launch "will help us reach out to segments that currently do not have access to banking services, towards our objective of achieving greater financial inclusion".
M-Pesa was launched by Vodafone in 2007 and is currently available in seven countries. The service is used regularly by more than 15 million customers, generating over 165 million transactions per month.