“Don’t lose territory to PhonePe”. At least two sources said that was the message its board had for Paytm, India’s leading digital payments company.
But a senior company official was adamant that the board’s missive had been exactly the reverse: “Ignore PhonePe, instead focus on Google Pay.”
Regardless of which version is true, this much is certain—after years of arduously building its infrastructure, ecosystem and offerings, Paytm must now defend them against newer players who did not have to do that heavy-lifting. Because both PhonePe and Google Pay rode successive waves of growth atop free, government-promoted payment rails called UPI (unified payments interface).