Dhoni makes first brand appearance after World Cup exit

MS Dhoni,Dhoni Brand Ambassador,Sport Business News India,Mastercard,Team Cashless India

Mastercard, along with cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni, has announced the launch of a nationwide initiative to accelerate the acceptance and adoption of digital payments. This is Dhoni’s first brand endorsement appearance since India’s exit from the ICC World Cup earlier this year.

Titled ‘Team Cashless India’, the initiative brings consumers and merchants to the forefront of the digital payments dialogue. The campaign encourages all Indians to nominate one or more merchants who currently do not accept digital payments. Mastercard will work together with Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), acquirer banks and fintech companies to support nominated merchants to deploy digital payments acceptance infrastructure.

The initiative is part of Mastercard’s efforts to create an ecosystem that encourages people to use digital payments for their day-to-day purchases.

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To garner support for the movement, Dhoni will interact with merchants and encourage them to ‘bat’ for a cashless India by accepting digital payments. Mastercard will provide select nominated merchants and consumers with a chance to join Dhoni’s Team Cashless India.

Talking about the initiative, Dhoni said: “Having been brought up in a small town, I relate to the challenges due to the lack of digital infrastructure. I am truly inspired by Mastercard’s commitment to building a society where everyone has access to safe, secure, and seamless digital payments. It is a progressive journey and requires extensive teamwork. Through Team Cashless India, I would like to invite every Indian consumer and merchant to become a part of this team and play their part in India’s evolution as a digitally empowered cashless society.”

Praveen Khandelwal, National Secretary General, CAIT said: “CAIT is acknowledged as a national voice for merchants and traders. We are excited to be a part of Mastercard’s initiative to educate merchants about the benefits of digital payments and implement it for their business. This will not only enhance the convenience and safety of payments but also create new business opportunities for merchants, increasing their contribution to the Indian economy.”

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Manish Patel, CEO & Founder, mSwipe said: “’ Cashless merchants in India’ has been mSwipe’s core mission and collaborating with Mastercard has fueled our growth from 400K points of acceptance in March 2019 to 1 million points of acceptance today. Along with India’s Cricket Champion and Mastercard brand ambassador MS Dhoni, we aim for 3 million points of acceptance by March 2020.”

Elaborating on the initiative, Ari Sarker, Co-President, Asia Pacific, Mastercard said: “Over the years, Mastercard has invested continuously and worked tirelessly to strengthen acceptance of digital payments amongst merchants, especially those in tier 2 and 3 cities, as they are the real drivers of India’s economic growth. This exciting initiative brings together Mastercard’s commitment to Digital India and Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s representation of a progressive ‘Bharat’. Mastercard believes Team Cashless India will play a vital role in engaging consumers and merchants to propel India’s transformation as a cashless economy.”

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