In a move that is being seen as keeping up with the times, Sodexo which is the paper voucher firm operating in the space of employee benfits and services has teamed up with Zeta, a technology startup which provides digital payment infrastructure for companies, to offer a seamless digital experience to its consumers.
This news follows the RBI directive which requires the phasing out of paper based employee vouchers. Paper-based meal vouchers, according to policy update by RBI, won’t be accepted beyond 31st December 2017.
Sodexo, whose meal vouchers and cards are currently being used by 11,000 corporate entities of India, and accepted at 30,000 merchant outlets and has a consumer base of 30 lacs, hopes to combine Sodexo’s market know-how and reach with Zeta’s digital technology solutions when it comes to management and distribution of employee benefits.
With this alliance, Sodexo’s 3 million daily consumers will get access to simple and user-friendly technology solutions to enjoy their everyday meal benefits. Zeta, on the other hand, will get access to Sodexo’s expertise in the B2B domain of sales and fine customer service.
According to Bhavin Thakuria, the co-founder of Zeta, “ We would love to have our technology adopted by all the clients and consumers possible in the country. In partnership with Sodexo, we can reach a larger number of clients and customers, faster and help them benefit from the savings and simplicity our technology can offer.”
Currently, there are 22 categories under which the government of India allows companies to provide employee benefits, and because this partnership, Sodexo would be able to provide the full bouquet of services and which would also include the current services being offered by Zeta.
According to Stephane Micheline, Chief Executive Officer, Sodexo Benefits and Rewards Services India, “Through this partnership, we will be able to offer our clients a large range of employee benefit solutions using advanced technology. Through this formidable partnership, CHROs can look forward to unmatched convenience & the benchmark in the Employee Benefits space for trust, expertise and innovative technology.”
Presently, Sodexo is in the process of digitizing its digital acceptance infrastructure at 1500 locations in India. And as for the current partnership, since Sodexo is neither buying or investing in the startup, it would be paying Zeta a particular amount. And for Zeta, which is currently has a base more than 800 customers would now be available at all merchant outlets and corporate entities which are part of Sodexo’s network. It is eyeing a growth of 30-40% in its consumer base.
The partnership for the present is restricted to India, but Sodexo plans to take it globally if successful.