Digital payments major PhonePe has received Rs 743.5 crore as part of a fresh fund infusion from its Singapore registered parent entity PhonePe Pvt Ltd, formerly known as Flipkart Payments, according to documents filed with the Registrar of Companies.
Its parent entity Flipkart which is now owned by Walmart had committed around $500 million to PhonePe in 2017 and this could be one of the last tranches of that committed sum. PhonePe has been receiving parts of the amount through multiple internal rounds over the last year.
The fresh funding will help PhonePe bulk up its cash position as it enters into a promotional blitzkrieg during the Indian Premier League. The company recently announced Bollywood actor, Aamir Khan as its brand ambassador to promote PhonePe as a payment application and said that it has earmarked Rs 500 crore for promotional spends this year.
PhonePe which leverages Unified Payments Interface in partnership with Yes Bank is entangled in stiff competition with Paytm and Google Pay. Paytm which has also been on a marketing spree offering cashback and discounts to its users. Tech giant Google Pay, another player in the market is trying to attract more loyal users through campaigns using scratch cards among others.
While industry insiders said that promotional spends and incentives should remain at present levels this year, if a player like WhatsApp manages to go live with its payment product anytime soon, there is a possibility of another huge round of incentives being thrown around from the incumbents.
PhonePe was strategic for Walmart when it bet on the India market by buying Flipkart for $16 billion last year, but multiple industry sources have pointed out that the payments company has been trying to raise fresh funds independently now, outside the Walmart stable. It could have spoken with players like Tencent and others for a possible investment at a valuation of $ 10 billion. ET understands that talks have not been finalized yet.