Google tests waters in lending with ZestMoney integration on GPay Spot

Google tests waters in lending with ZestMoney integration on GPay Spot
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27 Jul, 2020

Digital payments platform Google Pay has integrated its first lender, Bengaluru based credit provider ZestMoney, into its Spot platform for businesses. 

The platform allows a merchant partner to set up a digital storefront, or Spot, on Google Pay and be discoverable both online as well as through a physical spot, according to the website. 

For example, to a customer looking for food delivery services, the app will display all its merchant partners in the segment on its home screen. Additionally, businesses with a physical presence can place a Spot Code at specific locations, according to an explainer on the company website. Customers can scan this code to go straight into the business’ Spot, it said. 

“We’re partnering widely within the fintech ecosystem with financial services providers such as 5Paisa, ZestMoney and Groww, to name a few, while continuing to build on other categories as well, expanding the Spot Platform’s footprint further in the coming months,” Sajith Sivanandan, business head at Google Pay and Next Billion Users initiative, told TechCircle in a statement.

Spot has merchant partners across sectors such as retail, financial services and travel. It allows a user to book tickets from Spot partners, such as MakeMyTrip or Goibibo, directly through the Google Pay app. While food delivery service provider Zomato is a Spot partner, rival Swiggy only accepts payments through the UPI gateway on Google Pay and does not have a digital storefront.

“ZestMoney is indeed the first digital lender to be on the Spot platform... It is still a work in progress because only a few weeks… But in the coming months, it will be a completely seamless experience where one will even be able to manage their ZestMoney account on Google Pay. So this is how your Super Apps work,” a person familiar with the partnership told TechCircle on the condition of anonymity. 

The ZestMoney integration into Spot is viewed to be another step towards fulfilling GPay’s ambition to be a Super App in India’s consumer space. A Super App, by industry parlance, is many apps within an umbrella app -- multiple offerings can be housed within a Super App, ceasing the need for building separate apps.

“From a Google perspective, this helps build engagement at a time when the entire payments industry has realised a need to go beyond the core offering of payments with Covid-19’s effect on transaction volumes over the past few months,” the person added.

While ZestMoney declined to comment, Google did not share details on the commercial nature of the partnership and the management of user data.

The development was first reported by Business Standard.

As of September 2019, the Mountain View, California headquartered company, whose largest success in the financial services segment has been in India, had over 67 million monthly Google Pay users in the country.