Paytm in talks to rope in UBS as investor

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A fund operated by UBS’s asset management arm is in talks to buy a stake in Paytm alongside some of the Swiss bank’s clients, according to people close to the talks. UBS is discussing the purchase of Paytm stock from a group of the Indian fintech company’s employees, the people stated.

Paytm was last valued at $16 billion during a 2019 funding round, but its price is likely to have increased substantially in a market where governing pressure for a move away from cash and the Covid-19 pandemic have combined to create a great storm for digital payments.

Speaking at a Reuters conference Wednesday, Paytm CEO Vijay Shekar Sharma said the firm was on the cusp of turning its first profit.

“We could very well break even this year, we will start making money,” he told the conference. “I was surprised by the opportunity of monetization in 2020 during the pandemic, not just by our wealth accounts but also by lending.”

China’s Ant Financial has a 30% stake in Paytm, although claims abound that the Chinese giant is about to cash in its holdings due to escalating political tensions between the two countries.

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