Reliance Retail, India’s biggest retailer, now accepts payments via Digital Rupee in its current CBDC adoption pilot phase making it the largest organization in the nation to do so. 

The Central bank digital currencies (CBDC) is an initiative by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), and its adoption was previously announced by Nirmala Sitharaman, India’s finance minister, last February. Afterward, RBI created pilots for adopting the Digital Rupee before the end of 2022. 

Commenting on the recent exciting development, the managing director of Reliance Retail, V Subramaniam, said:

“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.”

Reliance Retail x Digital Rupee

A subset of Reliance (the Indian group led by Mukesh Ambani), Reliance Retail is partnering with Innoviti Technologies, Kotak Mahindra Bank, and ICICI Bank to simplify payments via Digital Rupee.

The payment solution easily interfaces with the cashier billing system. If a customer chooses this payment method, they can process it by scanning a QR code on the Digital Rupee app terminal from ICICI Bank or Kotak Mahindra Bank and entering the password. The payment is confirmed, and the consumer is notified of the payment – easy peasy!

Bijith Bhaskar, the bank head of digital channels & partnerships of ICICI, called this adoption by Reliance Retail a “historic milestone”. On the other hand, Deepak Sharma, the bank president and chief digital officer of Kotak Mahindra, called it “game changer”.

These retail payments via Digital Rupee will be possible at all 17,000 of Reliance Retail’s stores in India. This announcement and pilot for Digital Rupee adoption follows the current CBDC trend in countries, like Turkey, but it’s unclear if it will positively impact crypto adoption in the region.