Reliance Retail, the country’s largest retailer and a part of Reliance Industries Limited, has announced that it will begin accepting the Digital Rupee — India’s Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) — at its Freshpik gourmet superstore in Mumbai.
What Happened? Reliance Retail has become the first retailer in India to accept the Reserve Bank of India’s CBDC, dubbed ‘Digital Rupee,’ with plans to expand the capability to all similar outlets across the country.
The retail chain which is among the largest in the country has partnered with the likes of ICICI Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Bengaluru-based payments solution provider Innoviti Technologies to enable Digital Rupee payments at its stores.
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Launched as part of a pilot program in December 2022, Digital Rupee is issued by the RBI as a digital token representing the same value as fiat money. Denoted as ‘e₹’, the token is considered legal tender and is issued in the same denominations as paper currency.
Customers who use the ICICI Bank or Kotak Mahindra Bank Digital Rupee app (currently available only for Android users) can scan the QR code on the terminal and enter their passcode to authorise payment through ‘Digital Rupee for Retail‘ or ‘e₹-R.’
"This historic initiative of pioneering the digital currency acceptance at our stores is in line with the company's strategic vision of offering the power of choice to Indian consumers," said V Subramaniam, Director of Reliance Retail, in a statement shared with TechCrunch.
"With more Indians willing to transact digitally, this initiative will help us provide yet another efficient and secure alternative payment method to customers at our stores," adds Subramaniam.
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