Reliance Retail, in parter ship with Innoviti Technologies, ICICI Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank, announced the launch of in-store acceptance of retail payments through Digital Rupee. Digital rupee or Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) is basically a form of a digital currency that will be issued by a central bank. The CBDC will provide an additional option to the currently available forms of money. “It is substantially not different from banknotes, but being digital it is likely to be easier, faster and cheaper. It also has all the transactional benefits of other forms of digital money,” said RBI at the time of its launch in the first week of November 2022.
On 1 December 2022, Digital Rupee Retail was first introduced by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for retail markets across select Indian cities in a pilot mode, with access limited to consumers of certain identified banks. Initially limited to four cities namely Mumbai, New Delhi, Bengaluru and Bhubaneswar, it was later extended to nine other cities.
Eight banks, including ICICI Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank have been identified for phase-wise participation in this pilot. Customers of these banks will be able to transact with Digital Rupee through a digital wallet offered by them. The scope of the pilot will be expanded gradually to include more banks, users and locations as needed. As Digital Rupee Retail adoption increases, the larger society will benefit from its key features like convenience and security while person to person (P2P) and person to merchant (P2M) transactions and yield to improved financial inclusion in a digital economy.
How Reliance Retail Will Accept Digital Rupee?
Innoviti Technologies, as a technology partner to Reliance Retail, has architected this solution using advanced technology that integrates into the cashier billing system. After billing, if a consumer chooses to pay through Digital Rupee Retail, a dynamic CBDC acceptance QR code is presented to the consumer for scanning.
Customers, using their choice of Digital Rupee app powered by ICICI Bank or Kotak Mahindra Bank, need to scan the QR code on the terminal and enter their passcode to authorise payment through e₹-R. Cashiers and consumers get instant confirmation of e₹ transfer from consumer to Reliance Retail. The technology enables automatic reconciliation.