The National Payments Corporation of India is looking to pick up to 10% stake in India’s Open Network for Digital Commerce, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter.
The umbrella payments organisation may invest up to Rs 10 crore for this stake. This is part of the NPCI’s efforts to participate in national critical initiatives and contribute towards a public good, said the person quoted above who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
The Economic Times on Wednesday first reported that NPCI will pick up 9-10% stake in ONDC.
ONDC, which started pilot testing in five cities earlier this year, is expected to have a national roll-out in September.
At a recent event, the Union Information Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said that the ONDC has the potential to become the next unified payments interface.
“Can we expand ONDC to make it the next UPI? I request all of you to have a serious look at it. We believe that ONDC can be the next UPI. Just look (at) how you can leverage it for your business,” Vaishnaw had said.
ONDC is an open network, which enables buyers and sellers of goods and services to come in contact with each other, without being limited to the platform they are present on.
Consumers can potentially discover any seller, product or service by using any compatible application or platform, thus increasing freedom of choice for consumers. It will enable the consumers to match demand with the nearest available supply.
The open network protocols would also standardise operations like cataloguing, inventory management, order management and order fulfilment. Thus, small businesses would be able to use any ONDC compatible application instead of being governed by specific platform-centric policies.
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