ItzCash Card Pvt. Ltd. has become India's first multiservice prepaid company to receive a license from the country’s central bank to operate a mobile wallet, a spokesperson for the Mumbai-based company tells PaymentsSource.

The prepaid operator received the requisite Reserve Bank of India clearance for issuing the wallet in August under The Payment and Settlement Systems Act of 2007, according to the official. The license will allow ItzCash Card to offer a mobile wallet service to Indian citizens who subscribe to a mobile phone service.

The Mobile Wallet will enable ItzCash card to offer a mobile-payment service, enabling its subscribers to exchange physical cash for virtual money stored in an account accessed with a phone. Consumers will be able to use the service at partner merchants, though details were unavailable.

ItzCash is India’s largest nonbank issuer of semiclosed prepaid payment cards and is one of the first companies to introduce and facilitate mobile- and e-commerce services for India’s consumers. The ItzCash Card is a scratch-off card with an account number and password for online and mobile-payment transactions. It is available in various denominations ranging from 750 rupees (US$17 or 13 euros) to 9,000 rupees.

Consumers may use the card to pay a variety of bills, including for utilities and telephone, and to shop online at select online stores.

Users may reload the card account at any of the company’s more than 1,000 outlets countrywide by using cash or online using a credit or debit card.

The company processes about 60,000 transactions per day for various merchant services. “The license will definitely boost our business,” he says. “We expect to operate a service on this license in the next year.”

Last week, Bharti Airtel Ltd. became the first mobile operator in India to receive a license from the Reserve Bank of India to offer mobile-payment services (see story).

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