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Business
18 Apr 2017

Paytm Food Wallet to tackle outdated paper-based meal vouchers hiccup

Paytm brings Food Wallet for Indian employees

As per RBI, meal paper vouchers given out by firms are not going to be valid after December 31, 2017, and it has to make a digital leap.

Paytm has now introduced Food Wallet, which is a part of the main app and can be easily accessed to make payments sans the need of physical vouchers which existing players are still making use of.

In context

Paytm brings Food Wallet for Indian employees
The practise of using meal vouchers

Voucher

The practise of using meal vouchers

Employers usually issue meal vouchers to its employees to make use of the tax redemption bracket given by government on food allowances.

These meal vouchers usually come in printed stacks of paper which can easily be used by the employees in the cafeteria or redeemed in food joints that are in partnership with the provider from whom the vouchers have been procured from.

Food Wallet

Paytm Food Wallet for digital meal vouchers

Paytm aims to transfer these paper based meal vouchers to its newly introduced app Food Wallet, making the entire tax-free process digital.

The Food Wallet is an extension of its main app, where employers can transfer the allocated food credit to each employee in a matter of minutes and according to the blog it would then be used at employees' own discretion and convenience.

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How to use the Paytm Food Wallet

Meals

How to use the Paytm Food Wallet

Employees upon receiving the amount can check the balance available under the "Passbook" option in the app and locate food joints using the "nearby" option that is given.

They can then use this amount to pay for meals at their office cafeterias or places such as KFC, Burger King, Zomato, Pizza Hut, Café Coffee Day and Big Bazaar, which have tied up with Paytm.

Competition

Main rivals in this segment

Paytm is going to face stiff competition from Sodexo and Ticket restaurant, which are already major players and have a solid footing in the business.

Sodexo still uses a paper medium, but has now introduced prepaid cards for food and non-alcoholic beverages.

MobiKwik also has a product called ReMP which can automate food, travel and medical expenses reimbursements for employers through their platform.

E-wallet insurance against theft or unauthorized access

Insurance

E-wallet insurance against theft or unauthorized access

Paytm recently announced that it will provide free insurance cover to its users worth Rs. 20,000 or the last recorded balance in their digital wallet against unlawful debits on their platform.

Users will have to inform Paytm and file an FIR in case of "theft, burglary or loss of mobile phone/device" and if found genuine, the user will be reimbursed within 5 working days.

Making waves from college days

Vijay Shekhar Sharma, the founder of Paytm, which is now a billion dollar enterprise, had started a website called indiasite.net, which was sold after two years for a whopping $1 million.

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