One of the largest retail chains in India, Reliance Retail, has announced that it has started accepting the digital rupee in one of its store lines and plans to extend the rollout to all of its stores.
In a Tech Crunch report, the company said that the central bank digital currency (CBDC) is now available on Freshpik, its line of gourmet stores. In addition, the company also noted that it would expand support for the digital rupee to all of its properties, a move that could boost the country’s CBDC adoption.
V Subramaniam, an executive at Reliance Retail, noted that accepting the central bank’s digital currency adheres to the firm’s vision of offering “the power of choice” to Indian consumers. The executive also highlighted that the initiative allows the company to offer an alternative payment option in its stores.
According to the report, Reliance Retail partnered with ICICI Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, and fintech company Innoviti Technologies to implement CBDC. Consumers who choose to pay with the digital rupee will receive a QR code in the store to complete their payment.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) outlined plans for the country’s CBDC on Oct. 7 in a 51-page note. The country’s central bank defined several factors, including possible positive and negative effects. According to the RBI, one of the motivations for a CBDC is to reduce the operational costs of cash management.
The RBI launched the digital rupee wholesale pilot in November 2022 for institutions and merchants. On December 1, 2022, the central bank started the CBDC pilot for retail consumers within a closed user group consisting of merchants and customers.
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