Mobile payment and commerce platform Paytm, run by One97 Communication Ltd, has raised $1.4 billion funding by the Japanese internet and telecom major SoftBank Group, the company said here on Thursday.
"Paytm plans to invest Rs 10,000 crore (approximately $1.6bn) over the next three to five years towards its commitment to enabling half a billion Indians to join the mainstream economy. As a part of this vision, the company will soon launch the Paytm Payments Bank, a mobile-first product that will reach every corner of the nation, and focus on the millions of unserved and under-served Indians," the company statement said.
"This investment by Softbank and support of the incredible entrepreneur Masa Son is a great endorsement of our team's execution and vision. We believe we have a great opportunity to bring financial inclusion to half a billion Indians," said Vijay Shekhar Sharma, founder and CEO of Paytm.
"In line with the Indian government's vision to promote digital inclusion, we are committed to transforming the lives of hundreds of millions of Indian consumers and merchants by providing them digital access to a broad array of financial services, including mobile payments. We are excited to partner with Paytm in this journey and will provide them with all our support," said Masayoshi Son, Chairman & CEO, SoftBank Group Corp.
With this round of funding, SoftBank joins Alibaba as a major shareholder in Paytm and will also take a seat on the board of Paytm board.
Paytm on Wednesday said it will finally launch the operations of its payments bank on May 23.
"We are in the process of launching Paytm Payments Bank on May 23. We recently received approval from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for Renu Satti to be the CEO," Paytm spokesperson told IANS here.
Paytm was launched in August 2010 as an online recharges and bill payments platform and soon expanded into online and offline use-cases.
In January 2014, it launched the Paytm Wallet. It now has over 220 million users and has over five million offline merchants across India.