Card acceptance by smartphone



Mobile payments via smartphone already play an important role in India today. Many Indians are not connected to the banking system because they live in rural areas where there is no branch network. It is often difficult for the traditional banking sector to adapt to these conditions. At the same time, India is the second-largest communications market in the world, as mobile phones are common in even very remote villages.

Since July 2014, the Wirecard Group has enabled payment acceptance via smartphone at mobile point of sales (mPOS) in these areas. The solution is known as “Bijlipay” in India and came about as a result of a collaboration with Skilworth Technologies Private Limited. A smartphone or tablet can be adapted to function as a till system, enabling mobile payments at the mPOS for customers wishing to pay using a credit or debit card via a card reader.

Wirecard’s mPOS system explained: the merchant enters the sum to be paid in the Bijlipay app on the smartphone or tablet and the customer pays by credit or debit card via the card reader. The customer authenticates the sale with a PIN or signature and can then opt to be emailed a receipt once the transaction has been processed. All data are encrypted. The merchant has an overview of all transactions on the smartphone or tablet, which in practice functions as a sort of till.


Our greatest challenge was adapting our complete payment infrastructure to the circumstances on the ground. It was important for us to find a local partner who assumed responsibility for collaborating with the resident bank and was also in charge of operations. Our intention is to understand the markets in which we operate.

Joern Leogrande, Executive Vice President Mobile Services, Wirecard.

Wirecard’s partner, Skilworth Technologies Private Limited, was already cooperating with the Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) as a domestic acquiring bank for card transactions. In addition, Wirecard supports Bijlipay with its entire white label end-to-end platform.

Bijlipay’s team recognized some time ago that there is great market potential in this region. Transactions using credit and debit cards have been on the rise for years; the same goes for the number of mobile devices in circulation. Until now, traditional card payments were not an option for many merchants, as they involved high fixed-cost monthly rates, fixed telephone lines, and end-of-day settlement. To overcome scepticism, the team first had to explain to merchants that PCI certification means the mPOS Bijlipay solution is secure. Also, a wireless device paired to their mobile would be simple to use and cost-effective with no hidden costs, with variable fees applying only to individual transactions.


Thanks to the Bijlipay solution, the partners have quickly and effectively fulfilled the needs of the market with a single product that provides all the required services. Bijlipay is one of the first to offer mPOS on a chip & pin basis in India. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the Indian retail, transport, gastronomy, logistics and many other sectors can use this solution to easily and securely accept card payments via smartphones on the go. This represents a highly progressive development in India. The new white label payment program from Wirecard featuring the Bijlipay design has been very well received in India. One success story is Mahaligam Azhaghumuthu’s taxi service in Chennai in southeast India. The high traffic volumes in this region often cause journeys to take longer than expected, so costs can be hard to predict. He now uses the secure and cost-effective card acceptance solution from Bijlipay, meaning that his passengers do not need to worry about unexpectedly running out of cash. The owner-managed pharmacy Sippy Medical also benefits from the Bijlipay mPOS system. As it had previously only accepted cash payments, customers who did not have sufficient cash on them would often have to leave without the items they wanted to buy. The new mPOS terminal from Bijlipay is highly flexible. This has even enabled Sippy Medical to introduce a medication delivery service, as card payments can be accepted anywhere. The local Saravana Store supermarket has recorded increased sales since using the mPOS solution. The progressive move to a convenient mode of payment helped build loyalty and attract new customers.

The Bijlipay spokesperson said: “Conventional card terminals are often unsuitable for the Indian market. With Bijlipay, we are offering merchants a cost-effective alternative for securely accepting cashless payments at the point of sale.” This solution will be made available to even more people in India. According to the Let’s Talk Payments news platform, mobile payment is already boosting economic growth in the country as it enables Indians to avoid using cash, which can often be tricky to obtain. The growing number of cashless transactions shows that mPOS is off to an excellent start in India. Bijlipay currently accepts payment with Visa, Mastercard and Maestro cards. The plan is to expand this portfolio to include American Express, RuPay and UnionPay in the future.