HomeNewsEko Financial Services ties up with Bharti Axa

Eko Financial Services ties up with Bharti Axa

Eko also plans to expand its mobile banking operations in India and will launch SBI mini account services in Patna by August.

Eko India Financial Services, a provider of branchless banking especially aimed at low income groups, recently partnered with the State Bank of India. Together they have launched a program for opening SBI mini savings accounts on the mobile platform. These are no-frills savings accounts that can be operated with zero minimum balance through a mobile phone.
Abhishek Sinha, chief executive officer, Eko Financial Services told Telecom Yatra, “We have also partnered with Bharti Axa and micro insurance products would be available via Eko Financial. The service would be launched in one month’s time. Under the deal, insurance premium collection would take place through Eko.”
The company also plans to expand its mobile banking services in India. There are around 70,000 SBI mini accounts currently in operation and the company is targeting a million customers by the end of December. Although the service is currently available only to SBI account holders, there are plans for it to be extended to other banks as well. Inter bank transactions should be up in a few months’ time.
Eko’s banking solution is based on digits, rather than or downloadable mobile apps. The customer’s mobile phone number becomes the account number and he is given numbers to operate his account. Transactions worth Rs 17 crore are said to have taken place using the Eko service so far. The company also launched a money transfer service in January which is said to have witnessed transactions worth Rs 35 lakh.
The company is planning to launch services in two more districts in Bihar, along with Patna, by August. Eko is also raising funds. Once this is done the company will expand services in Mumbai, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh as well. Till now, the company had made an investment of Rs 11 crore in the business and foresees a total investment of Rs 50 crore in the coming 18 to 24 months. It plans to foray into mobile payments as well, 6 to 8 months down the line.
Eko currently has 365 counters in Delhi, NCR and over 150 in Bihar and Jharkhand. It plans to increase the number to 8,000. It, however, does not have any exclusive stores. Eko trains and appoints kirana, medical and fair price shops to carry out small physical transactions with customers.

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