In its bid to widen its reach, American Express has entered into a joint venture with Indian Overseas Bank (IOB). IOB will give access to around 500 of its branches in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Bangalore to AmEx. The partnership also marks IOB's entry into credit card business.
AmEx, which operates mostly in the premium segment, will tap IOB's high-end customers and increase its penetration through the co-branded card.
"We are looking to partner big local players who have got large customer base and would want to ring-fence their premium customers with credit card offering," said Shailesh Baidwan, country manager, American Express. "This partnership is part of our strategic move to expand our distribution."
The credit card major will also look at partnerships and alliances in line with its business requirements.
While debit card use is on the rise, Baidwan feels it is only positive for non-cash payment modes - credit or debit cards - which account of just 2-3% of India's total consumer spending.
"Higher usage of credit cards and consumers comfort with plastics will help increase the point of sale and the number of locations where plastics get accepted, and thus will help the growth of credit cards and spends on it," said Baidwan.