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Shashank Joshi, Managing Director, Money-On-Mobile (MOM)

Divya Kurup / 17:31 , Aug 14, 2012

Shashank Joshi, Managing Director, Money-On-Mobile (MOM) is responsible for the company’s growth and for the management of all MMPL’s industry lines of business. He will be leading MMPL’s core mobile payment business and leverage opportunities in emerging payment market. Joshi has the vision of “Simplifying Payments” and has the goal to bring the convenience of Simplified Mobile Payments to every Mobile subscriber in India. He has been working across the world on “Simplifying Payments” for over 6 years.


MMPL is a mobile payment systems provider that offers pre-paid and electronic payment instruments to mobile phone subscribers for purchasing goods/services and for merchants to electronically accept Payments and facilitate their movement of funds. The brand name for their service is Money on Mobile (MOM). MOM offers mobile phone users the flexibility and convenience to top up their talk time, DTH account, Buy Air / Bus / Movie tickets etc anytime, anywhere and with any type of payment type. Their service operates independently of the mobile phone carrier and hence any mobile subscriber can avail of MoM’s service. This offers mobile carriers the unique opportunity to augment their per mobile client revenue stream.


Through the m-wallet service, MOM provides customers with the convenience, flexibility and security to make payments 24X7 using their mobile phone. With a cumulative professional experience of over 100 years, the team at MMPL have joined hands from various backgrounds (Telecom, Finance, Operations, Training, ITES, Technology, Banking, Legal), to accomplish the common objective of “Implementing Mobile Payments System using M-Wallet” in the Indian market.


Replying to Divya Kurup of IIFL, Shashank Joshi says, “MOM has successfully got 500,000 subscribers on board and touches a daily transaction volume of Rs 20 million.” 

 

Give us a brief overview on ‘Money on Mobile’?

Money on Mobile is an electronic prepaid payment service provider which is India’s firstoperator and bank agnostic mobile payment system in India. The company was introduced in the year 2010 with the launch of services for the B2B market. In the year 2011, the much awaited approval to commence financial services on mobile phones was granted by the RBI. This gave a push to our project. And today, MOM has roped in over 90,000 retailer touch points pan-India with a presence in 300 cities.

MOM is a user friendly technology wherein the consumer at his/her convenience can load their mobile phones with prepaid cash of various denominations minimum being Rs 20 and use this virtual money to purchase goods and services at retail outlets. MOM has successfully got 500,000 subscribers on board and touches a daily transaction volume of Rs 20 million.


We believe in providing consumers the ability to make safe, convenient and flexible payments, thus empowering them to – ‘Stop at nothing. Pay for anything’.”


What potential do you see for the mobile wallet service industry in India?

We are overwhelmed to launch mobile wallet services in one of the surging mobile markets in the world. In India, mobile phone connections are growing rapidly every year, reaching the hands of everyone from urban to rural areas. The mobile payment platform is the next big alternative payment method considering the fact that India is predominantly a cash economy. MOM is all set to create a benchmark in this space.

How are you looking at expanding your distribution network?

The success of MOM totally revolves around good distribution network and so far we are doing well. The company is targeting 500,000 retail touch points across India in the next 18 months. MOM is backed with a strong sales team, which is working really hard so that the mobile wallet service reaches maximum population across the country.

 

What are the technological challenges being faced by the company?

MOM is the most simplified technology, specially designed for non-tech savvy or less literate masses. The customer has to type a text message to MOM, telling the company whom to pay and what amount. Once the SMS is done, the amount will be instantly transferred and both parties will receive a confirmation. Our 24 X 7 customer care will help customers to understand the service much better in case of any error in the SMS.

 

What are the security mechanisms to prevent unauthorized transactions?

Customer safety is one of our main agenda items, which has been taken care with utmost importance. Every transaction the customer makes is protected with M-pin number, which is very similar to the ATM pin number. Moreover, MOM platform servers use 256-byte AES hardware encryption and are protected with hardware-based firewall, which is trusted to secure our networks.


What is the outlook for the coming year?

We plan to flourish B2C products as it is practically a virgin market here, barring the telcos and the banks who are the major players in India. A lot more marketing drives, campaigns etc are also on the anvil in the coming year.


How are you targeting the rural markets?

We take special initiative in training the distributors who in turn educate the rural retailers as they will have to conduct multiple transactions across all operators. Today, out of the 90,000 outlets 8000 are set up in rural India. These are located in remote areas but are doing transactions which are extremely promising.


What about competition?

MOM has no competitors so far, as we bring in solution to the unbanked segment that has no alternate to make payments, except cash. We also cater to the non-smartphone users, as the main players like banks and telcos are unable to reach the huge population.


What kind of products are in the pipeline?

At present, we offer services where the consumer can load their MOM m-wallet with cash and use for mobile recharge (for all service providers), DTH recharge, bus/movie ticket buying and phone bill payment (post-paid mobile bills & BSNL landline bills). Plus, we will add electricity bill payment in the future. We may also tie up with a coffee chain so that consumers are able to pay their bills via mobiles. Very soon we plan to introduce an application where you won’t have to remember the syntax.


Brief us on your financials?

In 2011-12 year of operations, we scaled up to post Rs 2.4billion in sales. This year, we are planning to touch Rs 15billion in revenues. MOM plans to create a revolution in the fastest growing Indian mobile market.


What is the ownership pattern of the company?

Ownership pattern is predominantly among the six promoters, who hold 90% stake in the company. The balance is held by friends, family and employees. 


Any plans for stake sale?

Not at the moment.


What is the USP of MOM?

MOM is India’s first operator and bank agnostic mobile payment system which means that a mobile phone subscriber does not require to be a customer of any bank or mobile operator to avail of the services. Money on Mobile is an ultimate beneficial for the retailers and consumers because to enroll one self in this platform our capex is not high. Secondly, no hidden or extra service charges will be levied on the consumer while loading MOM m-wallet. It is very helpful for the majority unbanked population and for those people who have low-end mobile phones.