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Indian payment firm Paytm raises $1.4bn from SoftBank

Indian mobile payment platform Paytm has raised $1.4bn from Japan’s SoftBank in latest funding round.

The investment from the Japanese internet and telecom major was made in One97 Communications, the parent company of Paytm.

It is expected to help the mobile payment platform to expand further in India’s payment ecosystem.

The latest funding is also likely to help Paytm grow its user base further and develop a suite of financial services products for its users.

Paytm stated that the funding will complement its investment plan of around $1.6bn in the next three to five years.

The company further added: “We have been going from strength to strength in our payments division. Our zero cost QR Code-based payment solution has been adopted by millions of merchants and is now synonymous to digital payments in India.

“Going forward, we will continue to innovate and expand into new online and offline use-cases so we can serve you better, and that’s a promise.”

SoftBank’s investment values Paytm at about $7bn as reported by several Indian media publications. Livemint, citing anonymous sources associated with the deal, has reported that SoftBank has taken a stake of about 20% in Paytm with the investment.

The publication further said that as per the deal, SoftBank will buy $400m worth of shares in Paytm from SAIF Partners, its early investor in a secondary transaction. It also includes purchase of a minor stake from Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma.

In August last year, Paytm raised a funding of $60m from MediaTek which took its valuation to about $5bn. That increased to $6bn in March 2016 when Alibaba Group and Ant Financial Services Group bought a combined stake of nearly 4.3% from three Paytm investors Reliance Capital, SVB and SAP Ventures.

Image: SoftBank chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son (left) with Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma. Photo: courtesy of Paytm.