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Mastercard plans to invest $1 billion in India

It may consider hosting an office in city

Mastercard is constantly evaluating opportunities to invest in fintech start-ups through its India Investment Fund, one of whose investments in the recent months was in a city-based start-up.

“We are considering [more],” Rajeev Kumar, senior vice-president, market development, south Asia, Mastercard, replied to a query on whether the IIF was looking to invest in more start-ups in Hyderabad.

He, however, was unwilling to share more details. The India Investment Fund, which he said is a dedicated fund for investing in fintech start-ups in the country, had recently invested in Syntizen, a start-up from Hyderabad. The start-up in association with a Telangana government agency provides Aadhaar authentication services in the State.

Mastercard, which plans to invest $1 billion in India during 2019-2025, may also consider Hyderabad for hosting an office or a facility.

Noting that in five years since 2014, the number of locations where Mastercard has offices grew from 2 to 5-6 across the country—Mumbai, Gurugram, Vadodara and Pune, he said, “Who knows there could be time when we may have operations here also. We haven’t decided [as yet], no plan at this time in point”. On the headcount in India, he said Mastercard has, since 2014, invested $1 billion in the country, on people, systems, processes and solutions. During this period, the headcount increased from 29 to 2,000. The additional $1 billion investment proposed is expected to add 2,000 more people. “We may expand locations and investments in many other places,” he said.

Of the proposed $1 billion investment, $300 million would be on setting up a full “on-soil” domestic transactions processing centre in and for India, at Pune.

A good chunk of the remaining investment would be made on the services hub that would take care of various aspects, including authentication, fraud and safety and security solutions, analytics for customers in India and abroad. It would be set up in various locations, he said.

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