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Ola, the ride-hailing service battling Uber in India, is introducing credit services to its users as it moves closer to a major new funding round.
Today the company took the wraps off Ola Money Postpaid, a service that builds on Ola’s existing payment service — which can be used to pay rides and also third-party services — but offering a credit facility without additional charges. Essentially, the postpaid service lets passengers accumulate rides on Ola and then pay for 15-days of charges in one go, in the same way that we pay for electricity or a phone bill once a month.
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Ola said it has trialed the service with 10 percent of its 150 million users and seen a 90 percent repeat rate from those guinea pigs. Testing over, it plans to roll the service out to all users over “the coming months.” While doing that, it said it will increase the billing cycle to 30-days — so you pay for a month of Ola — and bring support for the postpaid service to third-parties.
The latter makes sense as it may boost Ola Money, Ola’s payment service that was given a standalone app in 2015 with a view to being used to pay bills, food and more. Ola hasn’t said much about the service, and we don’t know how well it fairs against competitors like Paytm, Flipkart’s PhonePe or Google Pay, formerly known as Tez.
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More broadly, Ola Money Postpaid looks to be an...
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