After disrupting the financial sector in India with the introduction of the digital payment system, Paytm is riding high on the success that it has witnessed post demonetisation and is all set to leverage its vast user base to enter the e-commerce space.
Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Founder and CEO, Paytm, said that the proposed e-commerce venture, which will be backed by the Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, will open a new opportunity for the company in international trade. Commenting on Paytm’s foray into the e-commerce space, Sharma said, “Our ecommerce business will piggyback on our payment business. Given our huge customer and merchant base, if we can leverage e-commerce for them, it will be a great opportunity. Moreover, the foray can give us access to international trade as well, which also is a big opportunity.”
Highlighting how Paytm has witnessed massive growth post demonetisation, Sharma added, “In the month of January and February, we have done 8.5 million transactions a day. In a day Rs 200 crore is getting added to Paytm wallets and this is unprecedented. In January alone, the transactions on Paytm crossed Rs 5000 crore and this growth story has surprised us too.”
For Sharma, the move to popularise digital payments is not only an opportunity for the fintech sector to bring out more innovative products but also a big boost for the entire entrepreneurial community. Stating how India is poised to build global companies and new ecosystems in financial and other sectors, Sharma said, “This is the time for our country to build companies that we are proud of. Never before has India had such a huge base of consumers available to its entrepreneurs as we are witnessing today. This is the starting point of building of new ecosystems. This country is going through an amazing cycle. First we invited the international companies and now we want to block international companies and build Indian companies. I believe that India right now has an opportunity to build something that can be seen by the world.”
Sharma might be venturing into the ecommerce space but in his estimation the next decade belongs to the financial services. Highlighting how fintech companies will be the growth leaders in the digital domain in the coming time, Sharma added, “If the last five years have been the years of ecommerce and selling anything and everything, the next five years will be all about the fintechs in this country. The way the telecom sector totally transformed and evolved in the last 10 years, a similar, if not the same kind of transformation, is going to happen in the financial sector too in the next 10 years.”
Sharma was speaking at the India Digital Summit 2017.