Exclusive | NPCI set to pick up 9-10% stake in government’s e-commerce project ONDC

The National Payments Corporation of India ( NPCI ) is close to picking a 9-10% stake in Open Network for Digital Commerce ( ONDC ), a government initiative to rival foreign ecommerce majors in the local market , people briefed on the matter said.

NPCI, which manages the digital payments network of Unified Payments Interface (UPI), is expected to invest around Rs 10 crore in ONDC, the people said. Approvals are already in place and the process is likely to be completed in the next 10 days, said one of them.

The government’s National Securities Depository Ltd (NSDL) and

Bank of India

are also expected to acquire stakes in ONDC. While the person said these proposals would also be finalised in 10 days, details weren’t available.

NPCI, NSDL and Bank of India didn’t respond to emails seeking comment till press time Tuesday. ONDC chief executive Thampy Koshy refused to comment, but sources close to the digital network confirmed the matter to ET.

ONDC aims to dilute the dominance of large ecommerce firms like Walmart-owned Flipkart and Amazon India in the local market. In online commerce, experts believe, ONDC is primed to do what UPI has done to digital commerce: expanding the space and making the service accessible even at the grassroots level.

Both organisations are already working very closely and NPCI becoming a stakeholder will further strengthen that, said a person aware of the plans, adding: “It (the deal) is not done to make investment gains though.”NPCI chief executive Dilip Asbe is part of the ONDC advisory council. According to the person, ONDC will have a total of 20 stakeholders, who include private and public sector banks like Punjab National Bank NSE 1.70 % , State Bank of India NSE 3.19 % and Axis Bank NSE 3.13 % . It had […]

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