Paytm may take two years to come out of red: founder-CEO

Payments major trains guns on banking, lending, insurance

Online payments major Paytm said it was working in the ‘right direction’ to come out of the red in the next two years.

Paytm founder and CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma told The Hindu: “All energies are now being mobilised towards turning the company profitable and predictable in terms of profit.”

As per Mr. Sharma, signs of recovery are already evident. “Year-on-year, ie January 2019 to January 2020, since the monetisation of the platform kicked in, our revenue grew 30% and Ebitda loss dropped by 50%.”

India recorded 15 billion merchant payments against total online money transactions of 26 billion in 2019, of which 9 billion were mobile payments, of which Paytm had the largest share with over 50%, he said.

“Now, Paytm is the most comprehensive payment app with all funding sources. Our focus is to reduce our Ebitda losses quarter-on- quarter. Going forward, our key growth areas will be banking, lending, insurance and wealth,” he said.

On the company’s gold savings and gold gifting services, he said, “We are overwhelmed to see that over 50 million people have used our platform to buy gold in the last two years.”

Calling 2020 ‘a year of lending,’ Mr. Sharma said, credit was critical for small and medium merchants and traders. “In our early, small trials, we will offer up to ₹2 crore to merchants. But once we obtain NDFC licence, we will get into credit business more seriously.”

Paytm, that claims over 300 million wallets, 100 mn UPI handles, 220 million saved cards, 55 million bank accounts and 16 million merchants, is also planning to get into stock trading services from April this year. It has already received approval from market regulator SEBI for the purpose.

Paytm had reported a net loss of ₹4,217.2 crore in FY19 compared with a loss of ₹1,604.3 crore a year ago.

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Printable version | May 29, 2020 4:33:29 PM |

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