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Smartphone maker realme on Tuesday launched its financial services platform ‘realme Paysa’ that will offer products like loans, mutual funds and credit score reports to consumers.

The move comes just days after larger rival Xiaomi had launched financial service ‘Mi Credit’ in India.

“realme is a challenger brand. In a short span of 18 months, we have seen tremendous growth and are confident that our financial services offering will do well. Our basic intent is to see how entry barriers can be removed to provide people access to financial solutions,” realme PaySa Lead Varun Sridhar told PTI.

He added that the company expects to reach 25-30 million people in the next three years.

“We aim to offer full stack financial services across lending, payments, savings and protection. We expect this business to break-even in the next 2.5-3 years,” realme India CEO Madhav Sheth said.

Chinese major Xiaomi formally launched its lending platform Mi Credit in India earlier this month. The service allows individuals to avail loans of up to Rs 1 lakh. The company had said it plans to introduce more financial products.

Premium smartphone maker OnePlus has also announced its OnePlus Pay mobile payment system, which is likely to be launched in 2020. It, however, has not disclosed any details.

According to research firm IDC, Xiaomi led the smartphone tally in the July-September 2019 quarter with 27.1 per cent share of smartphone shipments in India, followed by Samsung (18.9 per cent), Vivo (15.2 per cent), realme (14.3 per cent) and Oppo (11.8 per cent).

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The report had noted that realme climbed to the fourth position in the third quarter as its shipments grew multi-fold, driven by heavy shipments of its affordable C2 model and newly launched 5 and 3i series.

realme’s online share was at an all-time high of 26.5 per cent in the September quarter, up from 16.5 per cent in the previous quarter, IDC had added.

Sridhar on Tuesday said the ‘realme Paysa’ app will be available on both Google Playstore and realme app store and is currently in beta test. It will have four businesses lending, savings, payment and protection. Its full roll-out is expected in the next 6-12 months.

realme Paysa beta app will offer digital personal loans of up to Rs 1 lakh and SME loans upto Rs 5 lakh. Larger loan amounts for both individuals and SMEs will be serviced by the realme Paysa teams present in different cities.

The platform will also give an instant free credit report and free updates for three months. Besides, it will offer screen damage insurance for both old and new phones with an option of insuring 1 or 2 damages per year.

“In 2020, the platform aims to disburse loans of about Rs 1,000 crores, acquire 3-5 million new customers, launch multiple new products and take its first step in financial services in India,” Sridhar said adding that the company is also looking at supporting UPI in the coming months.

realme has entered into strategic co-development partnerships with Early Salary (for digital personal loans), Lending Kart (For digital business loans) and Credit Mantri (for free credit report).

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“We are evaluating the launch of mobile phone financing and payments in 2020,” Sheth said.

Sridhar said the company attaches utmost importance to data privacy and customer security.

“All our data is fully localised and permissions taken are very transparently displayed in the app,” he said. PTI SR

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