BUSINESS

Govt should take a stand on cryptocurrencies: Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma

He added, “We Indians are more critical of ourselves than outsiders. International investors have far better expectations of us and far better encouraging words for us than we Indians ourselves would have.”

Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma on Thursday said the Indian government should take a stand on cryptocurrencies.

“I fundamentally believe that government should officially take a stand on it because that will clear up all confusion,” Sharma said while replying to a set of questions on cryptocurrencies at the ICC Annual Session and AGM.

“Will you be venturing into crypto? The answer is 100%. We would be 100% [into] crypto. There is no confusion … I want to tell you that when you see crypto becoming legal, [you will wonder] how the world before was. It is exactly like what we had talked about after the introduction of the internet, laptops and mobiles,” he said.

The Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2021, is among 26 new bills on the agenda for the winter session of Parliament beginning November 29.

Commenting on the subdued listing of shares of One97 Communications, the parent company of Paytm, Sharma said, “Nobody would have been happy with this IPO performance. First of all, I am not happy … I am not happy with the Day 1 performance. But we will win the whole series, that I can tell you.”

He added, “We Indians are more critical of ourselves than outsiders. International investors have far better expectations of us and far better encouraging words for us than we Indians ourselves would have.”

The subdued listing and initial continuation of weak trading of Paytm, India’s largest new generation fintech, were seen as a “big sentimental setback” to the domestic market, which was thriving on the strong primary market. Analysts had said it would impact the inflow of money from the retail segment, which has been a key player during the year.

On Thursday, One97 Communications’ shares rose for the third back-to-back session following the weak debut. “I feel personally a super lucky person that every effort of ours, every resource added to us, [all] money that we invest makes our country better,” Sharma said.

“I wish that we as Paytm Payments Bank can become a small finance bank, because then we can solve a lot of payment problems,” he said.

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