In a significant testimony for mobile first companies, Ratan Tata has made a personal investment in Paytm. Paytm is one of the fastest growing startups in the country, and Tata is reportedly buying a small stake in One97 Communications, which owns and operates Paytm. Also Read - Using Paytm Transit card you can travel in metro, bus, train and more cashlessAlso Read - Ola reportedly looking to launch IPO early next year: Details here
Times of India reports that he will also take the role of an adviser at Vijay Shekhar Sharma’s firm. There is no word on the amount of shares Tata will hold of the company. Apart from Ratan Tata showing faith in the company, even Alibaba picked up 25 percent stake, valuing Paytm to over $1.5 billion. Also Read - How to buy Paytm shares: Popular platforms to open demat account
“I’m happy that someone like him (Tata) has put his faith and trust in our values and mission. There is no better adviser for Paytm. Mobile commerce has taken off incredibly fast. We have done $1 billion in gross merchandize value (GMV) in just about a year of launch of the Paytm wallet and marketplace,” said Sharma, founder of Paytm.
While talking about this big development, Sharma also shed light on what Paytm plans in the future. “Paytm’s ambition is to build 100 million wallets by this year-end; we already have 25 million active wallets. Our average wallet balance is Rs 150 and we do 1 million transactions a day across our app and other merchants like Uber, BookMyShow, besides others,” Sharma said.
Paytm has a pool of marquee investors like SAIF Partners, Intel Capital, Sapphire Ventures and Silicon Valley Bank. It plans to expand operations overseas with eyes on Singapore and South East Asian markets initially. The company is looking to hire as many as 4,500 people in all fields to meet its expansion plans in India and overseas.
In addition to Paytm, Ratan Tata has invested in a host of Internet companies including Snapdeal, Urban Ladder, Bluestone and CarDekho among others. He also has an advisory role at venture fund Kalaari Capital.