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Paytm, Adani Group deny stake sale talks

Commenting on a report that billionaire Gautam Adani was in talks with Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma for a possible stake buy, One97 Communications said, the 'news item is speculative and the company is not engaged in any discussions in this regard.'
Last Updated : 29 May 2024, 06:48 IST
Last Updated : 29 May 2024, 06:48 IST

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New Delhi: Paytm operator One97 Communications Ltd on Wednesday said it is not in talks to sell a stake to the Adani Group. Adani group has also termed such reports as "false and untrue."

Commenting on a report that billionaire Gautam Adani was in talks with Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma for a possible stake buy, One97 Communications said, the "news item is speculative and the company is not engaged in any discussions in this regard."

Separately, an Adani group spokesperson said, "we categorically deny this baseless speculation. It is totally false and untrue."

Sharma owns 9.1 per cent of Paytm in his personal capacity and another 10.3 per cent through Resilient Asset Management, a foreign entity, as of end-March.

Since shutting its banking unit after falling foul to regulations, Paytm has lost about half of its market value and there have been consistent speculation about it being a potential takeover target.

In February, it was reported to be in talks with billionaire Mukesh Ambani's Jio Financial Services but both entities had denied the same.

"With reference to the captioned subject, we hereby clarify that the above mentioned news item is speculative and the company is not engaged in any discussions in this regard," Paytm said in a regulatory filing.

A newspaper reported that Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani is looking to buy a stake in One97 Communications and Sharma met him at his office in Ahmedabad.

Paytm recently reported widening of loss in the fourth quarter of the financial year 2023-24 to Rs 550 crore, following the ban imposed by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on transactions related to its payments bank.

The RBI barred Paytm Payments Bank Limited (PPBL) from accepting deposits, credit transactions or top-ups in any customer accounts, wallets, and FASTags, keeping in view the interest of customers, including merchants from March 15 onwards.

The company during the reported quarter wrote off Rs 227 crore investment for a 39 per cent stake in PPBL, following future uncertainties associated with the bank's business operations including the uncertainty of any other regulatory development etc.

Sharma holds 51 per cent in PPBL.

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Published 29 May 2024, 06:48 IST

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