“The Point Of Inflection For Online Bill Payment Services Usage 15-18 Months Away”

As more and more consumers go online, they are also likely to pay their bills online. It simply reduces the hassles – standing in queue, writing out a cheque or pulling out wads of cash at counters. BillDesk is one of the earliest online payment services companies (the other one is Tech Process, an ICICI Bank affiliate), which essentially aggregates and manages bill payment and collections. The company, founded by three ex-Arthur Andersen professionals, received its initial funding from Bank of Baroda and the National Venture Fund for Software and Information Technology (part of SIDBI Venture Capital). In June, it closed funding of $5 million from Clearstone Venture Partners, one of the early backers of PayPal. In an interview to ContentSutra, Billdesk’s Executive Director and co-founder M N Srinivasu tells where the online bill payment market is headed in the coming years.

Tell us how you started?
We started in early 2000. Prior to that we were all working with Arthur Andersen. The other founders are Ajay Kaushal and Karthik Ganapathy. Our initial institutional funding came from SIDBI Venture Capital and Bank of Baroda – who over a period invested about $3 million. Eectronics payments space was a very nascent business when we started in 2000, we wanted strong partners like SIDBI Venture and BoB, to add to the credibility and solidity of the business venture. Today we have a fairly strong position in the entire electronic payments and transaction processing space.

How does your business work?
We work as an aggregator facilitating banks, billing and other institutions to offer convenient electronic payments and collections solutions. We are present across various channels like the internet, ATMs mobiles etc. We ourselves don’t get into customer acquisition. That is done by banks / credit card issuers/ associations (for instance Visa Bill Pay).
What we do is tie-up with large merchant establishments and also with the banks