Amazon to acquire Tapzo
Online retail giant Amazon (AMZN) has been trying to grab a share of India’s (INDA) growing payments market through Amazon Pay, its payments arm. Amazon Pay has reportedly acquired India’s Tapzo app in a cash-and-stock deal worth $30 million–$40 million. Currently, Tapzo allows users to access ~35 apps, including Flipkart, Amazon, Uber, and Ola, which will boost Amazon’s offerings.
Amazon’s investments in India
Amazon has been aggressively ramping up its payments business in India for the past two years. It has invested in several payments and emerging financial technology start-ups to boost its offerings.
For instance, earlier this year, Amazon put $22 million in digital lending firm Capital Float and $12 million in digital insurance start-up Acko. In May, Amazon backed digital payments start-up TTag. On August 28, Amazon rolled out a new bill payments service on the Amazon Pay platform to help customers easily pay their electricity, mobile, and broadband bills, including postpaid and prepaid bills.
Amazon has also invested in quite a few start-ups, including home services company Housejoy, financial comparison service BankBazaar, and gift card start-up Qwikcilver.
Competition from rivals
India is one of the fastest-growing economies in the world and is shifting to digitalization with an increasing number of Internet users. Amazon wants to gain from India’s attractive digital payments ecosystem, which is currently dominated by Paytm. According to reports in October 2017, Amazon India is expected to increase investments in its payments business at least fivefold to ~$305 million.
The growing Indian market has attracted a lot of tech giants to do business in the country. Warren Buffett–owned Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B) recently invested in India’s largest digital payment services provider, Paytm, owned by One97 Communications. China’s Alibaba (BABA) has also invested in Paytm. Amazon’s rival Google (GOOGL) is partnering with four Indian banks to offer instant, pre-approved loans to customers.