Should high subscription fees prevent those living in rural India from enjoying Netflix shows? Not really! A “bag subscription” for Rs 10 per movie can do the trick, says fintech company PayNearby.
Internet data consumption for chat, content and social media is similar in urban and rural areas. However, it is skewed in favor of the urban population for shopping, education, job search, medicine and mobile banking, among others compared to those living in rural and semi-urban areas, said Anand Kumar Bajaj, Founder and CEO of PayNearby. .
“Today, there are easy credit, easy insurance, easy content and many other services. According to BCG data, in urban and rural areas, people mainly use data for chat and content on social networks while for shopping, they use them less in rural and more in urban areas.
“Imagine if I start selling a movie on Netflix at Rs 10 cash, it will crash their servers. So to cater to this mass segment that we call Bharat…we are already in talks with Netflix,” Bajaj said. . PTI in an interview.
PayNearby is a fintech start-up that offers branchless banking and other financial services to the mass segment of the country by enabling local neighborhood kirana merchants commonly referred to as “Digital Pradhans”.
Citing data from global consultancy BCG, he said internet data consumption for free OTT (Over-The-Top) content platforms is 39% in rural areas, compared to 0% for paid subscriptions.
“I want to change that in the next five years. We can increase it to 20% for paid OTT subscriptions in rural areas within five years,” Bajaj said.
PayNearby, through its technology-driven Distribution as a Service (DaaS) network, serves 75% of India with services such as Cash Pickup, Remittances, Aadhaar Banking, Payment and bill top-ups, savings, travel, digital payments and insurance.
A former banker at ICICI Bank and Yes Bank, Bajaj said there is India and there is Bharat.
“The 10% are the digital savvy, looking for value, while the 90% segment is what we call Bharat. The digitized segment has all kinds of facilities and services like banking, cards debit, credit cards, purchases.All the major technologies are paying them services only, in addition to offering them cashbacks.
“And on the other hand there is this marginalized and 90% subsidized segment that the government is making efforts for. If we want to bring Bharat into India, it can be accomplished faster with digitalization,” Bajaj said.
He said it would not be viable to bring the distribution supply chain to the masses through physical means alone. But if you create this digitally powered physical model, the phygital model, you can provide credit, content, consumption, insurance, payments, education, and more. So you can relay everything digitally provided you have included digital payment.
Bajaj said up to Rs 1.5 lakh crore distributed under Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) remained unwithdrawn in recipients’ bank accounts, which “artificially reduces consumption”.
“People have money in their accounts, the bank is there, but no bank. There are 32,000 bank branches in India around 6 lakh villages, which are not enough to meet their needs. The government has fulfilled its responsibility by crediting that money to users’ accounts, but how do citizens use or access that money, that’s where enablers like us come in. It has to be done through what we do.
He said “Har Dukan Digital Pradhan” is the motto that every store will be a digital enabler.
A micro-entrepreneur can bring high-end technology in a simplified bagged way to every citizen. You can go to a store to buy 1kg of potatoes, 1kg of pulses, an OTT top-up, an insurance payment – it’s like it’s all in one stop, he said, adding that it had also helped to boost the kirana merchant’s sales.
“Every month we are able to distribute Rs 7,500 crore of financial services in sachets to Bharat which respects the services. These traders were the facilitators who helped disburse the government subsidy to people during the lockdown and their trust factor has increased to a large extent,” Bajaj said.
Similar to its name, the founder of PayNearby said the company wanted to bring everything close to a consumer.
“We want to do retail sashaktikaran (empowerment). This is a journey that will help India and Bharat transition from an attended service model to a self-service model and we will be responsible for that as well” , added Bajaj.
According to PayNearby, its 50 micro-entrepreneurs with more than 50,000,000 PIN codes support more than 20,000,000 customers across the country.
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