From Masayoshi Son to Warren Buffett — some of the world’s biggest billionaires have a stake in the success of Paytm IPO
- Paytm is reportedly going public after ten years of operation in the Indian market.
- The digital payments giant has shown extraordinary growth in valuation in ten years.
- Here are some of the key investors in One97 Communications, the parent company of Paytm.
Paytm is going public after ten years of operation in the Indian market. It was founded in 2010 by Vijay Shekhar Sharma with an initial investment of $2 million (approximately ₹14.5 crores at current rates) and in October 2011, it raised $10 million from Sapphire Ventures.
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Since then, the payments startup has gone on to add some of the biggest names in global finance, from Masayoshi Son to Warren Buffett to Alibaba Group (founded by Chinese billionaire Jack Ma) as its backers. Here’s a list of the key funding rounds, so far:
|October 2011||Sapphire Ventures||$10 million||Approx $300 million|
|February 2015||Ant Financials||$575 million||$800 million|
|September 2015||Alibaba Group||$680 million||$1 billion|
|August 2016||Mountain capital||$60 million||$5 billion|
|March 2017||Alibaba Group||$2.8 billion||$5.9 billion|
|May 2017||Softbank||$1.4 billion||$10 billion|
|August 2018||Berkshire Hathaway||$356 million||$12 billion|
|November 2019||T Rowe Price and existing investors Ant Financials and SoftBank||$1 billion||$16 billion|
|December 2019||Alipay Singapore||$660 million||Undisclosed|
The breakout moment for Paytm came in 2016 after India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi government’s decision to ban 86% of all currency in circulation. This led to a big, although temporary, boost to digital payments. Founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma raised over $4 billion in the following 12 months and the reported valuation went from $5 billion to $10 billion.
The second boost came during the pandemic, as people opted for digital transactions instead of physical cash to avoid the risk of virus transmission. As Sharma told Business Insider India, “the virus is pushing us towards the virtual world and making digital more relevant.”
Over the last 10 years, Paytm's valuation has seen a multi-fold surge, going from just $300 million in 2011 to over $16 billion at the end of 2019. Now, if the Bloomberg report is true, we might soon witness the biggest IPO from any Indian company.
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