Electronics payments provider Paytm is in talks with Japan's SoftBank Group to raise $1.2 to $1.5 billion (roughly Rs. 7,748 crores to Rs. 9,685 crores) in cash, making the latter one of the largest shareholders in the fintech start-up, Mint newspaper reported on Wednesday citing sources.
The deal, which could increase Paytm's valuation to $7 to $9 billion (roughly Rs. 45,196 crores to Rs. 58,108 crores), will see SoftBank buying some shares from existing Paytm investor SAIF Partners and founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma beside investing money in the company, the report said.
Paytm may also buy Snapdeal-owned payments rival FreeCharge, as part of the deal, the report said.
Digital payments have assumed great significance in India after the decision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government ban on old high-valued bank notes in November led to a severe cash crunch across the country.
© Thomson Reuters 2017
Disclosure: Paytm's parent company One97 is an investor in NDTV's Gadgets 360.