12 April 2016 Current Affairs: India's largest carrier Bharti Airtel received its payment bank license that is had applied for in partnership with Kotak Mahindra Bank, a move that will help the companies take Indian government's financial inclusion plans to the next level.Airtel M Commerce Services Limited (AMSL), a subsidiary of Bharti Airtel Limited has been granted payments bank license from Reserve Bank of India on April 11, 2016," the Sunil Mittal-promoted company told Bombay Stock Exchange .The new payments bank will help the fourth largest private sector bank by assets to break new grounds among the unbanked and expand its reach in the huge rural market. Kotak's banking expertise will help Airtel deliver financial services to millions of unbanked citizens across the country. Airtel has over 245 million customers in India and a revenue market share of 31.4%. Bharti Airtel and Kotak Mahindra had applied for the license through its wholly-owned subsidiary AMSL, which launched Airtel Money back in 2011 and was the first mobile based pre-paid payment instrument service in the country. Kotak had picked up 19.9% stake in Airtel M Commerce, for Rs 98.4 crore in February.AMSL offers mobile money services under the brand name Airtel Money, and the company had proposed to convert the existing pre-paid payment instrument license into a Payments Bank license as per the guidelines prescribed by the Reserve bank of India, in January this year. The Reserve Bank of India gave in-principle approval to 10 small finance banks and 11 payments banks, which are due to launch operations later this year or early next year. Payments banks are allowed to offer basic savings, deposit, payment and remittance services to people without access to the formal banking system.
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