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Why BharatPe decided to on-board 11 cricketers
The idea of having 11 cricketers as ambassadors is to communicate that BharatPe is much more than just a UPI QR: Subhas...

BharatPe’s strategy to ride on the back of IPL and Bollywood’s popularity

The idea of having 11 cricketers as ambassadors is to communicate that BharatPe is much more than just a UPI QR: Subhas...
  • Subhasis Beura, Head - Brands and Commerce, BharatPe tells us the thought behind roping in 11 brand ambassadors this IPL season.
  • The BharatPe XI team players are seen on the ground, across 7 of the league teams playing cricket.
  • The BharatPe XI team includes Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, KL Rahul, Mohammed Shami, Ravindra Jadeja, Suresh Raina, Shreyas Iyer, Prithvi Shaw, Sanju Samson, Yuzvendra Chahal and Shubhman Gill.
Payment and lending network company BharatPe on-boarded 11 Indian cricket players as its ambassadors -- the highest number of endorsers a brand has associated with so far in our country at one go. The brand is trying to ride on IPL’s popularity.

On why the brand decided to choose 11 different faces to represent it, Subhasis Beura, Head - Brands and Commerce, BharatPe said, “Last year, we started out with Salman Khan as our brand ambassador. We understand that Bollywood and cricket finds resonance amongst our target audience. Hence, this year, we have signed up 11 Indian cricket stars as our brand ambassadors. The cricketers include Rohit Sharma, K.L. Rahul, Ravindra Jadeja, Suresh Raina, Jasprit Bumrah, Shreyas Iyer, Prithvi Shaw, Sanju Samson, Mohammed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal and Shubhman Gill.”

Beura added, “The idea of having 11 cricketers as brand ambassadors is to communicate that BharatPe is much more than just a UPI QR. We want to communicate that it is a ‘team’ of products that caters to every financial need of the small merchants. BharatPe’s team of players will promote our key propositions such as QR payments, lending, 0% card machine and our loyalty program to the merchants and help us engage deeper with our core TG.”

As the cricket fever is catching up and becoming the talk of the town, BharatPe is also running a contest called BharatPe Premier League wherein BharatPe’s merchant partners can predict winners and man of the match, score runs and win exclusive cricket merchandise, personally autographed by BharatPe XI team. The top contenders of the BharatPe Premier League stand a chance to meet their favourite cricket stars. It is using a 360-channel approach to promote its offers.

Sharing the marketing plan for IPL, Beura said, “We will be leveraging the BharatPe Playing XI to communicate the suite of offerings for the merchant community. Staying with the cricket theme, we have launched our new merchant loyalty program to reflect ‘BharatPe=Cricket’, wherein BharatPe merchants earn runs, get cricket goodies and can meet their favourite cricket stars. We have a well-rounded marketing strategy that includes print, television and digital media. In addition to the traditional media like TV, OOH and Radio, we will also be leveraging digital, Whatsapp and in-app communication to make a big impact and connect as well as engage with our merchants.”

Since BharatPe is not directly associated with IPL, Beura said that the change in format will not impact brand’s performance.

He said, “We believe our smart marketing strategy will ensure we make high impact and get huge returns from the association. Our team of BharatPe Playing XI includes players who represent 7 out of 8 teams and hence, we can expect at least one of our team members to be in action on the ground, on most occasions. Additionally, to make the most of the cricket as well as the festive season, we will be launching our much-awaited brand campaign featuring the BharatPe brand ambassadors. This has been directed by an ace Bollywood director and will help us reach out and connect with millions of new as well as existing merchant partners across the country.”

This is also at an opportune time as BharatPe is expanding its presence in more cities. It has designed a fun campaign that will go on air early October.

Currently serving over 40 lakh merchants across 35 cities, BharaPe has grown its business by 30x in 2019 and is leading in UPI offline, processing over 5 crore UPI transactions a month (annualized TPV of US$ 4+ Bn). The company has facilitated disbursement of more than 40,000 loans (close to Rs. 250 crores) to its merchants since its launch.

BharatPe has raised US$142.5 million till date. The company’s list of marquee investors includes Beenext, Sequoia, SteadView Capital, Ribbit Capital, Coatue Management LLC, Insight Partners, and Amplo.