China’s Alibaba exits India’s Paytm, selling shares for $167 mn

China’s Alibaba Group has sold its remaining stake in Indian digital payments firm Paytm for $167.14 million through a block deal.
Paytm digital payment India
The exit comes days after Paytm posted its first-ever quarterly operating profit as a listed firm, nine months ahead of its own target. Singapore E-Commerce sold 21.4 million shares of Paytm on Friday at 642.74 rupees apiece, a 9 percent discount to Thursday’s close, NSE stock exchange data showed.

Paytm’s stock tumbled nearly 8 percent on Friday to close at 650.55 rupees, but it is still up nearly 23 percent so far this year.

Morgan Stanley Asia (Singapore) bought 5.42 million shares of Paytm at 640 rupees on Friday, the data showed.

It was not clear why Alibaba sold the stake.

In January, Alibaba sold  3.1 percent stake in the company through a block deal worth $125 million. Before that, the Chinese firm had a 6.26 percent stake in Paytm.

Paytm, which is also backed by China’s Ant Group and Japan’s SoftBank Group, has been under pressure to turn profitable ever since its dismal listing in November 2021.

The stock has declined around 70 percent since listing, and tumbled 60 percent in 2022.

“We see a very visible change in approach of the management to deliver profits as evidenced by core EBIDTA profitability reported recently. We were earlier expecting losses to continue but at current rate of revenues and operating leverage kicking in, we expect accounting profits to be delivered by FY26.”

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