Berkshire Hathaway invests in Paytm: Report

By Bishal Deep Basnet on Aug 28,2018 - 20:53

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK.B) has bought a $356 million stake in One97 Communications Ltd, according to a source speaking with Reuters. In an email to the newswire, Berkshire confirmed that it has invested in the Indian firm and added that Buffett was not involved in the transaction.  

One97's flagship brand, Paytm, is currently India's largest digital wallet. The brand has been making big strides in India's growing e-commerce sector with Paytm Mall. Paytm announced that they were getting funded on their website on Tuesday, saying Todd Combs, the investment manager of Berkshire had joined its board of directors.

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Combs says,

I have been impressed by Paytm and am excited about being a part of its growth story, as it looks to transform payments and financial services in India.

At the end of the last quarter, Berkshire was holding with $111 billion in cash and lifted the cap on stock buybacks last month. The One97 deal marks the first direct investment of Berkshire in an Indian company. As well as its first investment in a privately-held technology company. 

Paytm was started in 2010, but it gained popularity in 2016 when the Indian government took the decision to demonetize Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 notes. Due to severe shortages in the cash-dependent nation, many Indians took to doing transactions digitally for the first time. 

Paytm's user base rocketed up to 270 million in 2017. And now, it rocks more than 300 million registered users.

Tags -  Berkshire Hathaway , Paytm , Business


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