The Asian Banker Tuesday, 16 July 2024

Razorpay gains merchant acquisition licence in Malaysia

5 min read

Razorpay, one of the fintech giants in India expands its footprint by obtaining a licence to acquire merchants in Malaysia for Curlec, to address digital payment challenges in growing economies.

Additionally, Curlec by Razorpay is now a non-bank member of the national payments network and infrastructure, Payments Network Malaysia Sdn Bhd (PayNet).

The 'Curlec by Razorpay' payment gateway, regulated by Bank Negara Malaysia, is committed to being a fully compliant organisation. Razorpay has been relentlessly working towards building the financial backbone for businesses in India and will now take forward this legacy into Malaysia and together with Curlec, build a safe, customer-first, and innovative payment infrastructure for Malaysia.

As the first new member of PayNet since 2019, Curlec by Razorpay is now empowered to drive the adoption of DuitNow, real-time payment processing across a wider cross-section of Malaysia than before. Similar to Unified Payment Interface (UPI) in India, DuitNow allows one to transfer and receive funds instantly using just their mobile and national identification number, without needing a bank account number. This move allows Curlec to support BNM’s aspirations to create a cashless society.

At present, Southeast Asia stands as a dominant force in digital payments, and within this region, Malaysia is one of the fastest-growing digital economies. The growth is powered by the rapid development of Malaysia's digital economy and mobile phone penetration rate with 50% of Malaysian consumers reporting a reduction in the amount of cash they carry in their wallets compared to before. Furthermore, the country is expected to become a cashless society by 2030, highlighting an uptick in contactless transactions. As e-payment transactions continue their upward trajectory, Curlec believes that India’s real-time payments technology will prove instrumental to the adoption of DuitNow payments in Malaysia, due to the scale and success UPI has achieved in the Indian market.

Rahul Kothari, chief business officer, Razorpay expressed enthusiasm for their substantial investment in Malaysia's domestic payment ecosystem. “Today's event marks a significant milestone for Curlec by Razorpay. We are thrilled to become a member of PayNet and full-heartedly support Bank Negara's vision of empowering consumers and businesses of Malaysia to become a cashless society. Malaysia is an important strategic market for us as we see plenty of similarities with the Indian payments market. Our extensive experience in navigating the diverse and dynamic landscape of the Indian market empowers us to continually leverage that expertise, tackling various challenges and resolving payment issues on a global scale. I believe that we can help play a pivotal role in driving the adoption of DuitNow, similar to how we helped scale UPI in India,” Kothari said.

Kothari added: “It is incredible to witness the passion that Zac, Steve, and the team have brought to this space, and we’d like to congratulate them on achieving a remarkable milestone in such a short time.”

Zac Liew, co-founder and CEO of Curlec by Razorpay hailed Curlec’s newfound access to DuitNow via its membership to PayNet. Liew said: “It excites us to see the momentum our ‘payments uncompromised’ approach is building, especially by becoming the newest member of PayNet since 2019. Since launching our payment gateway in July, we are now processing in excess of MYR 2 billion ($418.6 million) annually and serving over 1,000 merchants. This sets the platform for Curlec to bring further innovation to Malaysia’s digital payment landscape, as well as scale DuitNow to the next level with our expertise in real-time payments - both in India and Malaysia.”

Liew added: “Malaysia continues to take steps through its financial blueprint towards a cashless society with the aim of e-payment per capita increasing at over a 15% CAGR by 2026. The target growth of Malaysia’s digital payments sets the path for the Curlec payment gateway’s target to serve more than 5,000 businesses with MYR10 billion ($2.09 billion) annualised gross transaction value (GTV) by 2025.“

Gary Yeoh, CCO, PayNet, said: “Malaysia’s financial sector blueprint seeks to future-proof key digital infrastructures to enable more digital finance solutions, and Curlec’s payment gateway is a welcome addition to our momentum in the blueprint. Digital transactions per capita have more than quadrupled, hiking from 49 in 2011 to over 221 in 2022. With the expectation that the number will reach over 400 by 2026, Curlec’s adoption of DuitNow is another ship lifted on the rising tide of digital payments.”

Curlec, now regulated by Bank Negara Malaysia, is trusted by over 1,000 businesses, including some of Malaysia’s most prominent brands like Tune Protect, CTOS, Mary Kay, and The National Kidney Foundation. In February 2022, Razorpay announced its first international expansion into Southeast Asia with the acquisition of a majority stake in Curlec.

Re-disseminated by The Asian Banker

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